Praise & Awards for Songs in the Shade

Songs in the Shade of the Cashew and Coconut Trees – an enchanting collection of 23 traditional songs that pays homage to the rich cultural heritage and multilingual communities of West Africa and the Caribbeanhas made a splash in the world of children’s literature and music! It was just selected for the Kirkus Best Books of 2019 list and also won a NAPPA Award.

The National Parenting Product Awards (NAPPA) celebrated this musical picture book with a wonderful review:

“You can pretty much guarantee that a musical picture book from The Secret Mountain is going to be quite good, but this one ranks as one of their best. First off, the book is expertly conceived. The initial section contains Judith Gueyfier’s simple, lovely illustrations for the CD’s 23 songs…

Because the book moves from simple to more sophisticated ways of reflecting or explaining the CD’s music, kids basically can grow up with the book.” – NAPPA

Songs in the Shade of the Cashew and Coconut Trees has also been included in the NAPPA 2019 Jingle Holiday Gift Guide! This holiday season, share music and stories from across the African diaspora with this wonderful celebration of history, language, and culture.

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Link to the 2019 NAPPA Gift Guide


The Kirkus Best Books of 2019 is out and this title has been included in the Picture Books category! Songs in the Shade won a Kirkus Star earlier this season, and so it is only fitting that it should be included in the Best Books of 2019.

“The vibrant colors mirror the diversity of each country and ethnic group, and the tunes are catchy and easy to hum. Readers will dance in their dreams.” – Kirkus

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Parenting bloggers like Toddlers Who Read, Bringing Up Babe, and Read with River have also been celebrating the educational applications of this multimedia collection. Readers have found that Songs in the Shade helps little ones with audio-visual processing, musical learning, focusing, historical contextualization, critical thinking, and even mathematics.

Link to Toddlers Who Read: https://www.instagram.com/toddlers.who.read
Link to Bringing Up Babe: https://www.instagram.com/bringingupbabe
Link to Read with River: https://www.instagram.com/readwithriver

“This is not just a book; it’s an experience… The illustrations really help you visualize the song! Towards the back of the book, you will find the original lyrics and translations for each of the songs so that you can sing along… Music is such a beautiful way to learn about and experience other cultures! I created a #screenfree experience for Ishaan by coupling this book with a CD player.” – Toddlers Who Read

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