Saturday, September 1, 2018
A Review of Mommy's Khimar by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow
Mommy's Khimar is beautiful. Even the title actually sparkles.
The illustrations are so bright and warm and the wording is like poetry; it so brilliantly captures the imaginings of a daughter wearing the same clothes as her mommy. It's an important portrayal, too, as we don't really often get to see stories of families in hijab or khimar. And it even shows different religions getting along lovingly as a family, which is something that is really needed and again often not present in children's stories.
It's fantastic read-aloud material. It was the perfect length for my preschooler to get a lot out of it, and enthralling enough that she wanted to look at the book on her own afterward.
It was also emotional for us because, while I cover my hair for different reasons, it was something I started when I was very sick.
I was barely able to move around, I didn't feel good, and I felt like I didn't look good, and the world seemed marred by my looming diagnosis. I began to cover my hair then, and that first day my toddler told me that I looked like a princess.
That she could see me as that when I was falling apart was a gift that I'll never forget.
This book kind of took me back to that moment through the way the main character sees her mother's khimars.
My daughters take my scarves, go through my collection to get just the one they want, and this story kind of shows that universal love of all things in mommy's wardrobe that every child in every culture has. And that's tearfully lovely.
This is an important story with great representation, and a fun read, and, for me, a connection to a sweet memory. We loved this book and I think everyone will.