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  • Writer's pictureShoumi Sen

"Always Anjali" - Book Review

Updated: Jan 24, 2019

This is the third year I am participating in MCBD and I am thrilled to be a part of this amazing movement. As a sponsor, co-host and a book reviewer, I am excited for this to be the best MCBD ever! This year, I was fortunate to receive a copy of  Always Anjali by Bharat Babies. This book is written by Sheetal Sheth and beautifully illustrated by Jessica Blank.

This story resonated with me because even when I lived in India, my name was considered rare (I have met just one other Shoumi in all my life) and yes, it was always mis-pronounced. I wish I had read this book while growing up. 

Always Anjali

Always Anjali is about a girl who is bright, spunky and full of life! Alas, her name is uncommon where she lives. When she and her friends want to buy personalized name plates, she is the only one who walks out of the store empty handed. No one seems to have heard the name Anjali and the kids in school make fun of her. Dejected, bullied and her spirit crushed, she wants nothing to do with her name and decides to change it. But her parents tell her that she and her name are special and they encourage her to be herself! Anjali soon realizes that it's pretty cool to be different and her creative genius makes her colorful "Anjali" number plate the most wanted one in school. 

This book is for anyone whose uniqueness has been made fun of - whether it is your name, the color of your skin or anything that makes you stand out from the rest. It's a great story for kids to learn that it is ok to be different - and in fact, it is kinda special to not be part of the herd!


What is MCBD?

Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2019 (1/25/19) is in its 6th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Our mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators. 

MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Medallion Sponsors on board!

*View our 2019 Medallion Sponsors here:

*View our 2019 MCBD Author Sponsors here:

Medallion Level Sponsors

Super Platinum: Make A Way Media

MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Author Sponsors on board

Honorary: Julie Flett, Mehrdokht Amini, Author Janet Balletta, Author Kathleen Burkinshaw, Author Josh Funk, Chitra Soundar, One Globe Kids – Friendship Stories, Sociosights Press and Almost a Minyan, Karen Leggett, Author Eugenia Chu, CultureGroove Books, Phelicia Lang and Me On The Page, L.L. Walters, Author Sarah Stevenson, Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, Hayley Barrett, Sonia Panigrah, Author Carolyn Wilhelm, Alva Sachs and Dancing Dreidels, Author Susan Bernardo, Milind Makwana and A Day in the Life of a Hindu Kid, Tara Williams, Veronica Appleton, Author Crystal Bowe, Dr. Claudia May, Author/Illustrator Aram Kim, Author Sandra L. Richards, Erin Dealey, Author Sanya Whittaker Gragg, Author Elsa Takaoka, Evelyn Sanchez-Toledo, Anita Badhwar, Author Sylvia Liu, Feyi Fay Adventures, Author Ann Morris, Author Jacqueline Jules, CeCe & Roxy Books, Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace, LEUYEN PHAM, Padma Venkatraman, Patricia Newman and Lightswitch Learning, Shoumi Sen, Valerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing, Traci Sorell, Shereen Rahming, Blythe Stanfel, Christina Matula, Julie Rubini, Paula Chase, Erin Twamley, Afsaneh Moradian, Lori DeMonia, Claudia Schwam, Terri Birnbaum/ RealGirls Revolution, Soulful Sydney, Queen Girls Publications, LLC

We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event.

View our CoHosts HERE.

Co-Hosts and Global Co-Hosts:

TWITTER PARTY Sponsored by Make A Way Media:

MCBD’s super-popular (and crazy-fun) annual Twitter Party will be held 1/25/19 at 9:00pm.E.S.T. TONS of prizes and book bundles will be given away during the party. GO HERE for more details.


Free Multicultural Books for Teachers:

Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators:


Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

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