Book Review: Not Norman: A Goldfish Story


A cute children’s book about the ever-changing relationship between a boy and his goldfish.

Not Norman: A Goldfish Story

Book Review in One Minute


I was drawn to this book because it features an African American boy, which is a rarity in children’s books. It has practical lessons with vivid graphics.

Story Synopsis: This book tells the story of a little boy named Norman, who receives a goldfish for his birthday when he really wants a warmer, furrier pet.

Author:  Kelly Bennett & Noah Z. Jones

Lesson/Skills: The story emphasizes 1) Emphasizes the importance of looking beyond first impressions; 2) Faithful friends can come in unlikely places.


MPAK Recommended. A recurring favorite story for TO. Excellent illustrations.

Age Range: 4-6 years, but a younger toddler will enjoy the story as well.

Book Type: Picture book

Length: 32 pages

Lead character: Black/African American boy

To purchase: Amazon. $6.99 (Paperback)

Small boy reading a book

About Author

I am Dr. Joanna Scott, creator of Mocha Parents, Awesome Kids. I am also a mother, researcher and racial equity consultant. I have worked with numerous organizations across the country who aspire to be more intentional about race in their organizational policies and practices. In this space, I borrow from my work and my parenting experiences living at the intersection of race and gender. I have an extensive background in public policy analysis, family counseling and years of experience as a child advocate. I hope my work mirrors my heart’s song – a deep belief in the brilliance of every Black child.