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The Local Take Talks Daddy Speaks Love with Author Leah Henderson and Illustrator E. B. Lewis

Daddy Speaks Love.jpg
E. B. Lewis
Daddy speaks FUTURE and of history's long, long past...an illustration from the new picture book Daddy Speaks Love by Leah Henderson and illustrator E. B. Lewis

This week on The Local Take, we're talking about LOVE! Specifically, Daddy Love. Author Leah Henderson has a new picture book out entitled Daddy Speaks Love, published by Penguin Random House. She describes it as "a love letter to fathers." The illustrations by E. B. Lewis show intimate images of Dads in situations that we don't usually find fathers. I speak with them about the book, love, and the Dads for Valentine's Day weekend.

Author Leah Henderson speaks with us about the inspiration for the book coming from the summer of protest after the murder of George Floyd. His daughter's words that her "Daddy changed the world" moved Henderson. She explained that the loss of a Daddy for the Floyd family and seeing entire families protesting allowed her to think about "love" from a Daddy's point of view.

In Daddy Speaks Love, Dads speak about love, meaning protection and equality. Love is equated with civic responsibility, community, and learning.

Henderson explains that she and her illustrator E. B. Lewis talked about how Dad's impacted the world. Writers and illustrators often don't collaborate, but they discuss the illustrations because Lewis is her friend.

E. B. Lewis has illustrated numerous children's books. Last, we spoke with him about his picture book Dark Was the Night: Blind Willie Johnson's Journey to the Stars. Those illustrations were expansive with wide-open spaces.

Illustrations for Daddy Speaks Love are different. The images, while broad, are also intimate. Lewis shares that this was done deliberately due to the subjects. He spoke about turning Henderson's words into a visual language.

I ask both artistic professionals about their career paths and their lives working as artists.

For more information about Daddy Speaks Love
For more information about Leah Henderson
For more information about E. B. Lewis