Walt Disney was not describing the main character in Dale Jordan’s new children’s book when he said, “We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”
However, Disney could have since curiosity and discovery push Yvette, the main character in Jordan’s new book, “Yvette Likes School,” as it pushed Disney who began drawing as a child. Next, Disney studied art. He became a commercial illustrator at age 18. He was 22 when he launched Walt Disney Animation, a division of The Walt Disney Studios in 1923. His artistic empire was worth $100-$150 million when he died at age 65 in 1966.
Subtle similarities surface when you flip through Jordan’s 40-page-book that was released in May. “My main character, Yvette, is a third grade student who likes to read and learn,” Jordan said in a recent phone interview.” Her parents urge her to get an education.”
Jordan, who is an educator and the mother of four adult children (three are college graduates) said, “By asking questions Yvette learns new words from the things she observes each day. For example, Yvette learns the word humor after listening to her friend who is always telling jokes. She learns the word Braille after she asks her friend who is blind about the book she is reading.”
Jordan said the idea for the book surfaced because she was well, uh, following her own dreams. “I usually have most of my ideas when I am driving. So I write notes and come back home and complete them. I used to stay up late at night and work on my book. I had to think about my book. I didn’t just jump up and do it. I talked to other writers and they gave me some advice. My publishing company found a graphic artist. It is not self-published.”
In a sense, Yvette, the main character resembles the author who is also not a stranger to curiosity and discovery. For example, Jordan returned to college while her daughter was enrolled in college. Next, Jordan earned her undergraduate degree in English in 2003 at Christopher Newport University. Later, she earned her master’s degree in elementary education in 2006 at Cambridge College.
Her book tour, which began this summer included a recent book signing at the Jordan Newby Anchor Branch Library in Norfolk.
She has also promoted her book at a coffee shop in Maryland. She held a book signing at Chapel Grove United Church of Christ in Windsor, Va., located near Suffolk. She also held a book signing in Portsmouth.
“I’ve had some positive feedback about my book,” she said. “One lady told me that her granddaughter said I wrote that book about her. Others tell me that their grandchildren really loved the book.”
By Rosaland Tyler
New Journal and Guide