Probably better known for his books for adults, Dave Eggers’ new book for children is an answer to the book’s title. Taking what can be a difficult concept for children to understand, Eggers uses verse and simple ideas to help children understand what it means to be a citizen. More importantly, it gives examples of how children can be good citizens. It even shows how a bear can be one too. With so much upheaval in the world, the book is a welcome reminder of the importance of taking care of others, accepting other people’s differences, and taking action to make positive change happen.
However, what really sets the book apart is the illustrations. Harris uses cut-paper and collage to wonderful effect throughout, creating hopeful scenes featuring children from different countries and different religions. The illustrations will give readers lots to talk about. What Can a Citizen Do? would be a useful resource in the classroom but would also be good to have on a child’s shelf.