SIMON B. RHYMIN’ de Dwayne Reed et Ellien Holi, illustraté par Robert Paul Jr.

A humorous and heartwarming bounce-to-the-beat underdog story about a young rapper whose rhymes help bring his community together.

by Dwayne Reed with Ellien Holi, illustrated by Robert Paul Jr.
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, March 2021
(chez Sterling Lord Literistic)

Eleven-year-old Simon Barnes dreams of becoming a world-famous rapper that everyone calls Notorious D.O.G. But for now, he’s just a Chicago fifth grader who’s small for this age and afraid to use his voice. Simon prefers to lay low at school and at home, even though he’s constantly spitting rhymes in his head. But when his new teacher assigns the class an oral presentation on something that affects their community, Simon must face his fears. With some help from an unexpected ally and his neighborhood crew, will Simon gain the confidence to rap his way to an A and prove that one kid can make a difference in his ‘hood?

Dwayne Reed, who is known as Teach Mr. Reed on social media, is a Chicago teacher, singer, and rapper who has appeared on Good Morning America, MTV’s TRL, Windy City Live, World News Tonight, and more. The video for his hit song, “Welcome to the 4th Grade,” has been viewed over 1.7 million times on YouTube. He has 39,000 Twitter followers and 4,500 YouTube subscribers. When he’s not writing, rapping, or teaching, Dwayne can be found presenting at educator conferences across the U.S.

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