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Seven Stories Press

Works of Radical Imagination

Book cover for Together
Book cover for Together

A breathtakingly simple poem of universal experience shows us the transformative power of collective action.

"Together offers a vision of the world we want for our children, one in which all living things flourish, our communities thrive, and justice prevails.” —Ibram X. Kendi, author of Antiracist Baby


In Together, social justice kids book pioneer Innosanto Nagara teams up with poet and activist Mona Damluji for a stunningly tender and pitch-perfect visual feast that juxtaposes individual action with the power of people acting together. Each of the ten free-verse couplets in the poem is spread across four pages of imagery, to make a unique and different kind of board book for young kids to discover with their families.

The first illustrated book in which Nagara applies his extraordinary visual imagination to words not his own, Together is simplicity itself—a poem about the transformational change that happens when people stop acting alone and start doing things together. Together is Nagara's third board book, following the immensely popular social justice board books A is for Activist and Counting on Community.

Book cover for Together
Book cover for Together

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“A stunningly beautiful book about unity and hope. Together belongs in every home and every classroom.”

“How can we raise our children to believe deeply in the power of collective action to build a more just and equitable world? We can start by reading this beautiful book with them, and celebrating, together, the boundless possibilities of a society centered upon love.”

“A window into a world our children deserve. It’s a world full of love, compassion and solidarity. This book shows us our potential when we come together. It is a gift to every child.”

“A masterpiece that distills the most important message we can teach our children today: we are stronger, more powerful and more beautiful together.”

“A beautiful celebration of collective action and power, at once playful and profound. The perfect message to share with the little ones who will shape tomorrow’s movements. A true treasure.”

“A message in the darkness, reminding us of our history, and our future. When we choose to come together, we find we are not alone!”

“This board book by Damluji emphasizes the ways in which the collective can offer more than the singular in simple, spreads-spanning phrases that range from the more physically evident (“One voice sings a tender song// And when voices sing together/ they make harmony”) to the more emotionally abstract (“One of us can love with all our heart// And when we love together/ we build community”). The repetition of “One...// And... together” establishes a rhythm ideal for readalouds while emphasizing interconnectivity, strength in numbers, compassion, and justice. Nagara’s recognizable, textured style offers spreads united by an enigmatic frog motif and featuring people of varying abilities, ages, skin tones, and religions; many spreads centering togetherness emphasize the warmth of interpersonal relationships.”

blog — October 19

“I See How This Ends” by Mona Damluji

Palestinian artist Heba Zagout was killed with her two young children by an Israeli airstrike on Gaza on Friday, October 13, 2023.


The past two weeks have brought unimaginable horror to the people of Palestine and to the people of Israel, a tragedy perpetrated by a fascistic regime at the expense of civillians. It's hard to know how to respond without falling into despair. Mona Damluji, author of the children's book Together, shares a response to the seige upon Gaza with a poem of anguish, of resistance, and, ultimately, of hope.

I SEE HOW THIS ENDS
BY MONA DAMLUJI

When I say Palestine, 
I bear witness to the atrocities of history. 

When I say Palestine, 
I believe another world is possible. 

When I say Palestine, 
I remember how all the keys worn around their necks 
once fit snugly in the palm of their hands as they arrived home. 

When I say Palestine, 
I see beautiful people healing tree roots torn from the land. 

When I say Palestine, 
I know right from wrong. 

When I say Palestine, 
I stand proudly on the shoulders of giants 
and dig my heel into the eye of the monster.

When I say Palestine, 
I mean Falastin and not occupied territories. 

When I say Palestine, 
I dream wide open spaces where life is thriving. 

When I say Palestine, 
I hear the cries of the grassroots, the unstoppable, 
the victors of this moral battleground. 

You can’t make me say conflict, 
when I mean occupation.

You can’t make me say animal, 
when I mean child. 

You can’t make me say human shield, 
when I mean child. 

You can’t make me say body, 
when I mean someone’s child was taken from them 
and never returned. 

You can’t make me say clash, 
when I mean they dropped bombs 
that flattened a city block. 

You can’t make me say both sides. 

You can’t make me say it’s complicated. 

You can’t make me say endless cycle of violence.

When I say, I see how this ends, 
I mean peace. 

When I say, I see how this ends, 
I mean justice. 

When I  say, I see how this ends, 
I mean Palestine.

—Mona Damluji
October 17, 2023

Innosanto Nagara

Children’s book author and illustrator Innosanto Nagara’s books encourage children to grow up with confidence in themselves, and to be proactive citizens who are passionate about causes from environmental issues to LGBTQ rights and civil rights. Born and raised in Indonesia, Inno moved to the US in 1988. After studying zoology and philosophy at UC Davis, Inno moved to the San Francisco Bay Area, working as a graphic designer for a range of social change organizations before founding the Design Action Collective, a worker-owned cooperative design studio. Inno lives in Oakland in a cohousing community with nine adults and eight kids.

Inno’s first book, A is for Activist, started a movement in social justice book publishing for children. After it came Counting on Community, then My Night in the Planetarium and The Wedding Portrait. M is for Movement is the fifth title written and illustrated by Innosanto Nagara.

Inno’s books stand in solidarity with people of all ages, races, gender identifications, and backgrounds. They suggest that your family isn’t only yourself and your parents but also the community in which you live, the histories of those around you, and the natural environment on which we depend for our food and water and air. The ideas in Inno’s books may sometimes sound controversial, but they speak to us in a language that is pure common sense and in tune with our natural wishes and inclinations as human beings.

Mona Damluji

MONA DAMLUJI writes, studies and teaches about oil cultures, cinema history and the Middle East as an assistant professor at UC Santa Barbara. She is a co-producer of the Peabody- and Emmy-nominated web series The Secret Life of Muslims, author of Together illustrated by Innosanto Nagara, and has curated exhibits and events around the globe that feature path-breaking art, film, photography, and comics. Mona and her partner live in California with their two hilarious children.