Published by Abrams Books. Publication date: Jan 10, 2023

🏆 Selected as the January/February 2023 American Booksellers Association’s Kids’ Indie Next Title

🏆 United States Board on Books for Young People has selected THE BOY WHO TRIED TO SHRINK HIS NAME , written by Sandhya Parappukkaran & illustrated by Michelle Pereira for the 2023 Outstanding International Books List. Read more here.

🏆 Included on the list of Best Books of 2023 collated by ‘The Centre for the Study of Multicultural Children’s Literature.’


Themes: Diversity & Inclusion, Acceptance, Friendship.

‘The Boy Who Tried to Shrink His Name’ is on Suzanne Jacobs Lipshaw’s ✨Dynamic Book Duos✨ blog paired with ‘That’s Not My Name!’ by Anoosha Syed.

Click here to read the blog post and access the activity sheets.

Check out this review by Samantha @thediversebookworm who 📚reads diversely, featurs diverse books and authors  and promotes social justice, student equity & inclusion by celebrating diversity 👧🏽👦🏼🧒🏿 on her Instagram page. Click here to read post.

Book Reviews

KIRKUS – “An insightful tale that digs deep into names—an inherent part of identity—and the emotions attached to them.” Read full review here

NEW YORK TIMES – Reviewed by Andrea Wang – “Most exquisite is the bright bird into which the name Zimdalamashkermishkada has transformed, a soaring symbol of the boy’s newfound pride in his cultural heritage.”

PICTURE BOOK BUILDERS – Sworder and Parappukkaran’s books are both about shrinking, at least on the surface. Diving deeper, they also share common themes of immigration, belonging, and assimilation. Read full article here

LAVENDER MAGAZINE – This is not a tale of a child bullied for his odd name; his new teacher and classmates are friendly, but rather a gentle reminder aimed at the 5-8 reader or be-read-to that everyone is fine as they are, and needn’t hide their best self. Read full article here

Instagram Reviews

@shameer_reads – This book will remind us to pay close attention to pronouncing difficult names of people which is the key ingredient to celebrating them because names matter. It influences who we are and how others view us. What a warm and uplifting book indeed!

@maistorybooklibrary – Picture Books that Validate ALL NAMES – see reel here

@thediversebookworm – ✨It is so important to be sure to pronounce students’ names correctly. Giving a student a nickname because you can’t pronounce their name is highly offensive, and it diminishes the importance of their identity and cultural heritage, not to mention is a micro-aggression. If you aren’t sure how to pronounce someone’s name, ask them, and then practice it until you know it!

@ihaveabook4that – The school year is readily approaching. Let’s emphasize the importance of valuing names by pronouncing them correctly.