Book Trailer Premiere: Be a Friend by Salina Yoon

I am honored to premiere the book trailer for Salina Yoon's Be a Friend. Mr. Colby Sharp and I knew right away that we needed to give Be a Friend the trifecta treatment, feature it during an upcoming meeting of the #SharpSchu Book Club, and tell everyone about it at conferences. It is a forever book.  

Before you watch Be a Friend's book trailer, please read this letter from Salina. 

Dear Reader


I write a lot about that. A friendship between a penguin and a pinecone, between siblings, and even a friendship between a bear and a stuffed animal. Each one is important. 

Be a Friend is yet another friendship story, but with a twist. It is unlike any other friendship tale. This friendship saves the boy. 

Not from a cliff, not from a moving train, but from the isolation of his own unique world. Dennis' world is silent, and sometimes it makes him feel invisible and alone. 

I was born in South Korea and came to the United States when I was 4 years old. I started kindergarten a year later speaking no English. I could hear things that I couldn't understand, and I couldn't say things that I wanted to say. I was shy and stayed silent--until one day, I met a friend who spoke the same language. She pulled me out of the shadows and into the sun. I blossomed. And learned. I was happy, as every child should be. 

But the story of Dennis is not about me. It speaks to the universal theme of loneliness due to having special needs, a language barrier, cultural differences, childhood depression, self-identity issues, and other inner conflicts shared by both children and adults. It can speak to everyone because we all have something that makes us feel different inside however it's labeled. That is what makes us human. But the spark of joy that happens after a connection is made is also human. And wholly universal. 

Every person on this planet has the potential to be happy. Sometimes, it takes just one other person to make that bridge. A friend. A teacher. A librarian. A stranger. 

Dennis' story encourages readers to embrace their uniqueness. A quirky, yet universal story of self-acceptance, courage, tolerance, and the power of friendship. Be a Friend will make you laugh, cry, and possibly break out in jazz hands!

Your friend,

Salina Yoon 

Be a Friend by Salina Yoon | Publication Date: January 5, 2016


  1. A beautiful trailer for a wise and moving book. And Salina's letter should be tucked inside of every single copy. A gift. Thank you for sharing this. xx

  2. Love the trailer! Congratulations, Salina!

  3. This is so beautiful! I am really looking forward to this one. Congratulations Salina!

  4. Salina, having read and re-read your books as often as I have, I feel like you are a friend. So, it is no surprise to me that your books about friendship take my breath away. <3 This one looks beautiful.

    1. Thank you for that, Wendy! Friendship is my favorite theme, though I'm actually quite shy and don't socialize if I don't have to. But that doesn't mean I'm not friendly, of course. I see myself in both Dennis AND Joy. I've been the one to reach out, and the one to receive it. Makes life rich. :-) Thank you for reading! Salina

  5. Oh my goodness-- this gets me all tingly inside (must be a school counselor thing)-- can't wait for this one! Congrats & thanks for sharing!!

    1. Keribean, I'm glad it makes you tingly inside! You're a good friend to MANY, so that makes sense. I appreciate the work that you do.This story is close to my heart. I hope you share the message with your students. -Salina

  6. This is an absolutely beautiful and touching story! How wonderful our world would be if this were to happen every minute of every day!


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