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I Am Darn Tough
Cover of I Am Darn Tough
I Am Darn Tough
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Girls (and boys!) can become stronger and more resilient simply by realizing how strong and resilient they already are, and running provides a pathway to that realization. Programs like Girls on the...
Girls (and boys!) can become stronger and more resilient simply by realizing how strong and resilient they already are, and running provides a pathway to that realization. Programs like Girls on the...
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Description-

  • Girls (and boys!) can become stronger and more resilient simply by realizing how strong and resilient they already are, and running provides a pathway to that realization. Programs like Girls on the Run (which serves more than 200,000 girls each year, through 200 councils, across all 50 states) help kids discover their inner reservoirs of fortitude. Such programs address the whole child when she most needs a counterbalance to harmful stereotypes of who she should be and how she should act. In the words of participants, "Girls on the Run made me realize that I am the boss of my brain." "At Girls on the Run I learned how to be comfortable in my own skin!"

    Refusing to quit, overcoming weariness, skinned knees, and self-doubt to finish a cross-country run, the resolute narrator of I Am Darn Tough realizes that she is stronger than she thought, inside and out. I Am Darn Tough shapes the Girls on the Run philosophy into a beautifully illustrated narrative to inspire any child, anytime, who wants to run toward greater confidence in themselves.

About the Author-

  • "Licia Morelli is a writer whose essays and poetry have been featured in Vanity Fair, The Rumpus, Johns Hopkins Press, Maine Media Workshops + College, ARTS Magazine, and other publications. Licia is a mother of two children and the Maine Literary Award – winning author of The Lemonade Hurricane (Tilbury House, 2016).

Reviews-

  • School Library Journal

    Starred review from September 1, 2020

    K-Gr 3-Morelli isn't just writing about a cross-country race run by a young girl, perhaps 11, with brown skin and flushed cheeks. The girl prepares at the starting line with her teammates. There is the crunch of gravel, large hills, and twisting paths, captured in soft-focus watercolors. It is a true quest, right down to the moment of stumbling and scraping her knee. "I remember crying, feeling defeated. My heart hurting, stomach in knots." Readers are there at the start of the race, and at the end, when the girl crosses the finish line, the wind at her back, a cramp receding in the rush of accomplishment. In the voice of the narrator that is both strong and true, the story has a simple, empowering message: that even to the fleet of foot there will be moments of self-doubt, injury, and pain. Diaz's scenes carry readers along with various perspectives and styles, from the close-up of the girl's determined face to the ghostly outlines of the moment when she falls and drags herself back up. VERDICT A necessary purchase; a surprisingly poetic glimpse of the heart of the athlete, with a welcome, winning heroine.-Kimberly Olson Fakih, School Library Journal

    Copyright 2020 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus

    July 15, 2020
    A runner's high is an exhilarating mix of relief and tenacity. Running is largely a solitary and quiet activity, combining muscle memory and mental strength. A race puts this book's protagonist, who has light-brown skin and straight, black hair in a ponytail, together with other runners; all present female. She lines up at the start, runs at her own pace, and finishes strong. Her friends and teammates, a merry band of casually diverse girls, are supportive, yet the text understands that the girl's race is hers alone. What Morelli and Diaz do remarkably well is show what the girl thinks about and sees with each step and how that fuels her to keep going and not give up. Diaz's illustrations prove that anyone who runs has a runner's body; the stereotypical vision of what a runner looks like is a misconception. In the middle of the book are two illustrations that leave lasting impressions: The first abruptly ends the soft images seen heretofore when the girl falls and scrapes her knee; a stark, almost aggressive smear of blood is rendered with sharp, jagged lines. In the second, the girl breaks the fourth wall and stares out at readers. Her gaze is so straightforward and penetrating that it's almost startling, yet it feels simultaneously compelling, daring readers to look away first. (This book was reviewed digitally with 10-by-18-inch double-page spreads viewed at 48.6% of actual size.) A tender introduction to the discipline and community that running provides its athletes. (Picture book. 5-8)

    COPYRIGHT(2020) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Kirkus Reviews A runner's high is an exhilarating mix of relief and tenacity. Running is largely a solitary and quiet activity, combining muscle memory and mental strength. A race puts this book's protagonist, who has light-brown skin and straight, black hair in a ponytail, together with other runners; all present female. She lines up at the start, runs at her own pace, and finishes strong. Her friends and teammates, a merry band of casually diverse girls, are supportive, yet the text understands that the girl's race is hers alone. What Morelli and Diaz do remarkably well is show what the girl thinks about and sees with each step and how that fuels her to keep going and not give up. Diaz's illustrations prove that anyone who runs has a runner's body; the stereotypical vision of what a runner looks like is a misconception. In the middle of the book are two illustrations that leave lasting impressions: The first abruptly ends the soft images seen heretofore when the girl falls and scrapes her knee; a stark, almost aggressive smear of blood is rendered with sharp, jagged lines. In the second, the girl breaks the fourth wall and stares out at readers. Her gaze is so straightforward and penetrating that it's almost startling, yet it feels simultaneously compelling, daring readers to look away first. (This book was reviewed digitally with 10-by-18-inch double-page spreads viewed at 48.6% of actual size.) A tender introduction to the discipline and community that running provides to its athletes. (Picture book. 5-8)

Title Information+

  • Publisher
    Tilbury House Publishers
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