As Frisch and Simonelli point out, play deserts do not come about due to any incompetence on the part of parents; “entrenched racism, de facto segregation, the deterioration of the nuclear family, and generational histories of trauma” and more institutional inequities contribute to communities’ inadequate resources for children’s play. Frisch addresses with insight and sensitivity the dynamics of a white woman working with communities that are predominantly Black and Latino, and her commentary on systemic racism and her own mission to combat the white savior complex is its own act of antiracism that brings critical awareness and integrity to Frisch’s book and organization.
Frisch and Simonelli’s debut also functions as a how-to guide on building a successful not-for-profit organization with key takeaways at the end of most chapters and plentiful resources in the book’s back matter, but its central focus is a narrative that explores the necessity of play for babies and the journey of one driven mother to address the fact that “love alone is not enough” for kids to “build [a] strong foundation for lifelong learning and success.” Readers curious about community organizing and the sociological and scientific importance of play will find Frisch’s guide to be a valuable resource.
Takeaway: Founder of baby play space HelloBaby reveals what it takes to enact community change.
Comparable Titles: Jill Vialet’s Why Play Works, Leslie Crutchfield and Heather McLeod Grant’s Forces for Good, Jamie Schumacher’s It’s Never Going to Work.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: A