Introduction My library career is shaped by the fact that for as long as I have been a reader, I have had access to books whose characters served as my mirror.1 For many summers during my youth, I could be found rereading my mother’s collection of Trixie Belden stories by Julie Campbell and Kathryn Kenny. I saw a young, white girl with siblings, homework, chores, and parents who sometimes had to say “no.” She had all the markers of a loving, middle-class home, and aside from the wealthy neighbors and mysteries to solve, she was me. I never had an “aha!” moment upon discovering, for the first time, a book character I saw myself in because I have never been without. This is the very notion of privilege. Beyond that, I don’t specifically recall the first time I read a character who did not look like me. My initial thought is to ascribe this to an assumption that everyone has characters like themselves so it would not seem new or dif- ferent to me. I suspect, however, that this is not entirely accurate. The more likely explanation is that I probably did not encounter a nonwhite protago- nist until I was in college and most likely in my world literature classes. It was not until I was a librarian developing the collection my patrons wanted (and need) that I understood that my experience with books was unlike the experience of a growing number of our patrons. When I began focused collection development, I did so with the intent of filling the library with authors and characters who resembled the com- munity I serve. I look at my life and my career through the lens of a white, educated, middle-class, cisgender woman. Some in my community look like me, and some do not. Seeking materials for my community often results in my having yet another window into a world adjacent to mine. I am thrilled to have this window that I did not know I was missing, but my joy and opportunity in this will never be more important than that of those who are only now getting their mirrors. The mirrors featured here mostly show the faces of young people, as my professional experience has been focused
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