Originally performed at the Kennedy Center for the unveiling of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, and later as a tribute to Walter Dean Myers, this stirring and inspirational poem is New York Times bestselling author and National Book Award finalist Jason Reynolds’s rallying cry to the dreamers of the world.
For Every One is just that: for every one. For every one person. For every one dream. But especially for every one kid. The kids who dream of being better than they are. Kids who dream of doing more than they almost dare to dream. Kids who are like Jason Reynolds, a self-professed dreamer. Jason does not claim to know how to make dreams come true; he has, in fact, been fighting on the front line of his own battle to make his own dreams a reality. He expected to make it when he was sixteen. Then eighteen. Then twenty-five. Now, some of those expectations have been realized. But others, the most important ones, lay ahead, and a lot of them involve kids, how to inspire them. All the kids who are scared to dream, or don’t know how to dream, or don’t dare to dream because they’ve NEVER seen a dream come true. Jason wants kids to know that dreams take time. They involve countless struggles. But no matter how many times a dreamer gets beat down, the drive and the passion and the hope never fully extinguish—because just having the dream is the start you need, or you won’t get anywhere anyway, and that is when you have to take a leap of faith.
A pitch perfect graduation, baby, or love my kid gift.
About the Author
Jason Reynolds is a New York Times bestselling author, a Newbery Award Honoree, a Printz Award Honoree, National Book Award Honoree, a Kirkus Award winner, a two-time Walter Dean Myers Award winner, an NAACP Image Award Winner, and the recipient of multiple Coretta Scott King honors. The American Booksellers Association’s 2017 and 2018 spokesperson for Indies First, his many books include When I Was the Greatest, Boy in the Black Suit, All American Boys (cowritten with Brendan Kiely), As Brave as You, For Every One, the Track series (Ghost, Patina, Sunny, and Lu), and Long Way Down, which received both a Newbery Honor and a Printz Honor. He lives in Washington, DC. You can find his ramblings at JasonWritesBooks.com.
Read an Excerpt
For Every One
THIS LETTER IS BEING WRITTEN
from a place of raw honesty and love
but not at all
a place of expertise
on how to make
your dreams come true.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Encouragement in poetry form! Thanks to NetGalley and Simon & Schuster for the opportunity to read and review For Every One by Jason Reynolds! A quick read poetry book giving encouragement to dreamers and sharing the author’s own experiences with having a lifelong dream. 4 stars for the portrayal of the struggling that goes hand in hand with having a dream. * I received a complimentary copy of this book for voluntary review consideration and all opinions and thoughts are my own.
Every time I read something by Jason Reynolds I am always amazed at how I ever said I wasn't a fan of poetry. It's like he awakens a love of poetry inside mw that I didn't know was there. And for that, I thank him because without him, I wouldn't get to experience these things. I LOVED the message behind this. No matter what age you are, no matter what you've been through, don't give up on your dream. It may take a bit longer than you'd like, but who's to say that wasn't the plan the whole time? These were things I knew, but this poem helped me to remember it. It also helped me to remember that making it is different for everyone. For some, making it might not be what you think it might be. Perfect example, there are DOZENS of people who said I was crazy for going to school to be a librarian because libraries and librarians will be non-existant soon. If I had listened to them, I wouldn't be anywhere close to where I am today. It's all in what it means to you and this helped me see that. Jason Reynolds sucked me into this poem, letter, story whatever you want to call it and I finished it within an hour. And then I read it again. This story needs to be read by anyone who might be thinking of giving up. So that they can realize that sticking around and excercising patience can be the pay-off you need.
Poetry is one of those areas where I tend to be super critical. When I received Reynolds 'letter' to dreamers, I dove in with caution already on high-alert. But I was completely surprised. This is a letter written in poetry form to dreamers, especially youth, and for those, who are scared to dream because they fear the dreams might never come true. Although the poem is over a hundred pages long. . .something which already had me wondering. . .it is not a long, thick read. Each page holds only a few lines or a short verse of thought. Never long. Never wordy. But packing tons of punch. It wasn't any trouble to read this in one sitting from beginning to end, although it is divided up into four sections. The words come from the soul, speak clear truth and don't paint a reality which is more colorful than it really is. The words and phrases are easy to follow and hit home. The message is encouraging but at the same time, never allows the reader to believe that life is butterflies, easy or that every dream comes true with hard work. It's a naked truth which rings clear without ever talking down to the audience. The author brings his thoughts across in a way, which is easy to relate to, realistic and honest. Although I started reading this convinced that it was headed for the dusty corner of one of my book shelves, I ended it knowing that I'd found a book which I'd like to share with several youth who are about to embark on life with hopes of seeking the dreams of their own. In other words, this is a wonderfully meaningful piece of poetry. I received a complimentary copy and loved it, so I'm leaving my honest thoughts.