Parker Dresses Up (Ready to Read: Level One)

by Parker Curry (Author) Tajae Keith (Illustrator)

Reading Level: K − 1st Grade

The New York Times bestselling team behind Parker Looks Up returns with this Level 1 Ready-to-Read about the fun of dressing up and dreaming big!

Parker is playing dress up with her younger siblings, Ava and Cash. With each costume, Parker imagines what her life would be like if she were a doctor, a princess, or even a princess doctor. Because Parker knows that she doesn't need to limit herself to being one thing. The sky's the limit!

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School Library Journal

K-Gr 2- It's a rainy day, so Parker decides to play dress-up with her younger sister and brother. The siblings gleefully try on costumes and imagine themselves in various careers until an argument arises. Brother Cash, dressed as a chef, wants to play with sister Ava's fire hose. The siblings' mother helps them see that everyone can be more than one thing, and the children then have fun making unique combinations of costumes and accessories. The digitally created illustrations represent this Black family with realistic expressions and varying skin tones. They also provide clues about the family's lifestyle, showing the mother as a successful work-from-home parent, with a glimpse of the father sharing leisure time with the family. This is an accessible early reader text with a positive message about not placing each other into arbitrary boxes. The children are encouraged to dress up as whatever they would dream to be, even something fantastical like a "mermaid teacher," while the mother shares that she is both a mom and a writer. VERDICT An exploration of creativity and healthy communication that will be a valuable addition to early reader collections.

Copyright 2022 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission. 


A solid choice touching on sibling relationships, make believe, and conflict resolution.

Parker Curry
Parker Curry, six years old, is a New York Times bestselling author and dynamic young mind with a love for ballet and reading. Currently, Parker is in first grade, where she loves to explore art and new books. Precocious Parker lives with her mother, father, younger sister, and baby brother.

Jessica Curry is a New York Times bestselling author, blogger, and work-at-home mama to three children: Parker, Ava, and Cash. Jessica's debut children's picture book, written with her oldest daughter, Parker, was nominated for a 2020 NAACP Image Award. The mother-daughter duo has since penned four additional children's books in hopes of inspiring others to dream big dreams. Jessica's blog, Happy Mama Happy Babies, is an authentic motherhood and lifestyle platform that shares her family's adventures, growth chronicles, and everything in between. Jessica and her family reside in Sherman Oaks, California.

Brittany Jackson (Bea for short) is a New York Times bestselling illustrator who attended the College for Creative Studies and is the grand prize winner and returned alumni of L. Ron Hubbard's Illustrator of the Future Award of 2007. Bea has worked in freelance as a character and outfit designer for various social networking and gaming platforms for more than eight years, though she is most publicly known in publishing as an illustrator.

Tajae Keith is a painter with a focus on character design currently based in Oakland, California. Inspired endlessly by rap, the heartbeat of the Black community, she explores the punk-esque nature of Blackness through dynamic shape language and expressive colors. A night owl by nature, you can find her at her desk painting under the cover of darkness with a cup of coffee close by.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Simon Spotlight
Publication date
January 20, 2022
Ready to Read: Level One
BISAC categories
JUV051000 - Juvenile Fiction | Imagination & Play
JUV011010 - Juvenile Fiction | People & Places | United States - African-American
JUV048000 - Juvenile Fiction | Clothing & Dress
JUV013070 - Juvenile Fiction | Family | Siblings
JUV043000 - Juvenile Fiction | Readers | Beginner
JUV074000 - Juvenile Fiction | Diversity & Multicultural
Library of Congress categories
Brothers and sisters
African Americans
Readers (Publications)
Curry, Parker

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