Actress Lupita Nyong’o can officially add ‘Author,’ to her accomplishments, as she has debuted the cover for her long-awaited children’s book, Sulwe.
Last year, the Us and Marvel’s Black Panther star revealed that she had a children’s book in the works. Fast forward a year later, and the highly-acclaimed movie phenom has finally given fans a sneak-peek of her projects cover artwork.
Earlier in the month, Nyong’o took to her Instagram to share a photo of the cover, while revealing to fans the inspiration behind the book.
“I wrote #Sulwe to encourage children (and everyone really!) to love the skin they are in and see the beauty that radiates from within,” Nyong’o stated in her post.
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I wrote a book! It's called #Sulwe! This is the cover! I'm thrilled to share it with you. Sulwe is out October 1 and is available for pre-order today at the link in bio! The extraordinary @VashtiHarrison illustrated the story. I wrote #Sulwe to encourage children (and everyone really!) to love the skin they are in and see the beauty that radiates from within. #Bookstagram #ChildrensBooks
Sulwe, which translates to “Star,” in Kenyan, is about a 5-year-old girl who suffers from certain insecurities due to her deeper skin complexion, and being the darkest child in her family. Last year, Nyong’o opened up to the New York Times about the character, who is also based on her own past struggles with colorism:
“I am pleased to reveal that I have written a children’s book! … Sulwe is a dark skinned girl who goes on a starry-eyed adventure, and awakens with a reimagined sense of beauty. She encounters lessons that we learn as children and spend our lives unlearning. This is a story for little ones, but no matter the age I hope it serves as an inspiration for everyone to walk with joy in their own skin.”
Since bursting onto the Hollywood scene, the stunning actress has been very adamant about embracing her heritage and her aesthetics. In 2017, Nyong’o had to address UK publication Grazia, for photoshopping out her natural hair.
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As I have made clear so often in the past with every fiber of my being, I embrace my natural heritage and despite having grown up thinking light skin and straight, silky hair were the standards of beauty, I now know that my dark skin and kinky, coily hair are beautiful too. Being featured on the cover of a magazine fulfills me as it is an opportunity to show other dark, kinky-haired people, and particularly our children, that they are beautiful just the way they are. I am disappointed that @graziauk invited me to be on their cover and then edited out and smoothed my hair to fit their notion of what beautiful hair looks like. Had I been consulted, I would have explained that I cannot support or condone the omission of what is my native heritage with the intention that they appreciate that there is still a very long way to go to combat the unconscious prejudice against black women's complexion, hair style and texture. #dtmh
“As I have made clear so often in the past with every fiber of my being, I embrace my natural heritage and despite having grown up thinking light skin and straight, silky hair were the standards of beauty, I now know that my dark skin and kinky, coily hair are beautiful too.”
Sulwe will be available in bookstores October 2019.