Celebrating Mister Rogers’ Legacy of Kindness + a Giveaway

Introducing my newest book:

You Are My Friend: The Story of Mister Rogers and His Neighborhood (releasing from Abrams Books on August 6, 2019). Art by Matt Phelan: www.mattphelan.com

I wasn’t able to watch the television program Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood until I
became a mother, so my eldest child and I got to know it together. We learned the opening and closing songs, and Rachel looked forward to the puppets’ new adventures in each episode. 

As a teacher, I was impressed by how much Fred respected children.
He told them the truth. He also showed them that all of their feelings were manageable.
I aspired to build the emotional foundation of our home firmly on the kind of unconditional
acceptance that Fred Rogers demonstrated.  

Day after day, we listened as Mister Rogers looked right
into the camera and shared his time-honored message: “You’ve made this day a
special day by just your being you. There’s no person in the whole world like
you, and I like you just the way you are.”*


illustration of Freddie Rogers and Grandpa McFeely (c) Matt Phelan

As I researched my book, I was fascinated to discover that these words were shared with Fred by his Grandpa McFeely. They stayed with Mister Rogers throughout his life. In fact, the quotation above comes directly from Fred Rogers’ public testimony to the United States senate on behalf of public television. 

The last image of the book is of Fred Rogers looking out at the reader—just as he connected with us one-by-one through his television program—and repeating his grandpa’s message.

My hope in writing You Are My Friend is that readers everywhere will receive those words and allow them to sink deep within. No matter our ages, we all need to hear them.

You are valuable and important—just as you are.


I’m giving away four signed copies of You Are My Friend, one to each of four winners. 

Here’s how to enter:

You can enter the draw a total of four times, once in each of the following ways.

  • Comment on this blog post
  • Retweet my pinned tweet about the giveaway:
  • Tag someone on my Instagram post about the
    giveaway: @aimeereidbooks
  • Share my post from my Facebook author page about
    the giveaway: https://m.facebook.com/aimeereidbooks

The giveaway closes at 12:00 noon EST on August 13, 2019, and I will contact the winners. 

* Fred Rogers, testimony, Extension of Authorizations under the Public Broadcasting Act of 1967. Hearings, Ninety-first Congress, first session, S. 1242; April 30 and May 1, 1969. Senate Committee on Commerce, Subcommittee on Communications, Washington, D.C.


You Are My Friend is a work of fiction. This book is an expression of admiration of Fred Rogers, the man and the artist, by the author and illustrator. This book is not associated with or endorsed by The Fred Rogers Company. 


34 thoughts on “Celebrating Mister Rogers’ Legacy of Kindness + a Giveaway”

  1. You are so talented Aimee! I wish you all of the success in the world and pray this is a best seller for you. It was only when you posted about this book that I found out you were an author!
    Imagine that…all these years knowing you and I had no idea what you did. I have seen that you were at the library as a speaker and that you attended Calvin for the writer’s conference, however, I somehow still did not realize that you were an “actual” author. I will promote your book to as many people as I can!

      • Aimee, you are beautiful inside and out, and it comes through in your amazing books. So happy there is another one to add to my library and to read to my new class!
        My son watched Mr. Rogers and I listened while I sewed nearby. It was a quality show.
        I think this is a fantastic idea for a book! Thank you for writing it!

        • How special to read your note. I have very happy memories of visiting your classroom. Your joy comes through!

          I can picture you sewing while your son watched Mister Rogers. That sounds like a wonderful way to spend some time.

          Your students are fortunate to have you for a teacher.

          Wishing you everything good,


      • Thank u so much for the opportunity to win ur new book we have ur other book and read quite often… enjoy looking forward to this book

        • Chantal,

          It’s great to hear from you. 🙂 Thanks for your note and for your very kind words about Mama’s Day with Little Gray. Knowing that your family enjoys that book means a lot to me.

          Take care, and I hope you enjoy the remainder of the summer.


  2. Dear Aimee,

    Congratulations on the publication of this book about Mister Rogers! I never watched the show either as we did not have a television when I was growing up. But now I’m curious and will have to watch the show! And, of course, I’ll be purchasing a copy of your book! :o)

    Congratulations and best wishes!

    Esther Colliver

    • Esther:

      Thank you for your lovely note!

      I didn’t watch Mister Rogers as a child either. I was happy to discover the program as a mom.

      I think you’ll find that you appreciate Fred Rogers’ perspective and his way of respecting children. I certainly admire his work and the legacy he has left.

      I’m grateful for your support and that you took the time to write.

      All my best,


  3. Aimee,

    As an aspiring teacher, I too admire Mister Rogers’ work in spreading awareness of the importance of emotional well-being. The greatest thing we have in this world is each other and so, we must invest in one another in any healthy way.
    Thank you for your dedication to this project. It looks incredibly beautiful!
    Congratulations on the publication!
    I wish you all the best.

    • Carla,

      I couldn’t agree more.

      How wonderful that you are an aspiring teacher! I taught high school for several years before I had my children. We need more people who want to encourage emotional wellbeing in children.

      I’m touched by your kind words; they encouraged me. Thanks so much for writing!

      I wish you great fulfillment and success.


  4. Loved seeing this book in Indigo I bought it right away and sat in the parking lot to read it – couldn’t wait to get home.

    • Oh, my! Rebecca, thank you for letting me know that you found my book in Indigo! I know the feeling of not being able to wait to read a book, and I’m incredibly touched that you felt that way about this one.

      I’m wishing you continued joy in all you do.


  5. Book looks real good i would love to read it to my nephew he loves when i read to him this book is about a character that i used to watch on tv when i was little

    • Thank you, Awilda.

      It’s great that you were able to watch Mister Rogers when you were a child.

      I think it’s wonderful that you read books with your nephew. Those times make wonderful memories. I hope that you are able to read the book together, too.

      All my best,


    • How fantastic that you could watch the program with both your children and grandchildren. That’s wonderful!

      It’s cool that they also had the trolley. I bet that made a good toy.

      All my best,


  6. Oh this is charming and wonderful! I grew up on Mr Rogers and my grandparents lived in Pgh. He and his causes are very dear to me. I now run a preschool and we take his ethics to work each day. Yes I try to run my preschool like Mr Rogers was going to stop by for snack time or circle time and I’m not ashamed to admit it. My own children love him too. We have been to the children’s museum and to his center in P.A. with my father just 2 years ago. I had no idea there was a children’s book about him as a child and I’m totally in love with just the cover. This had made my day!! #happyintheneighboorhood

    • Beth,

      What a wonderful way to work and live–as though Mister Rogers might walk in the door at any moment. 🙂 I think your preschool sounds wonderful. What blessed children to be able to feel that security.

      I love the book cover too. Matt Phelan’s art is wonderful. I was delighted by the way he conveyed the emotional heart of the story.

      Your comment made my day! Thank you.


  7. Growing up we had Mr. Dressup not Mr. Rogers but it still looks like a wonderful book to share with my nieces and nephews.

    • I watched Mr. Dressup as well. We didn’t have a channel that showed Mister Rogers in my home.

      I especially loved the crafts that Mr. Dressup showed his viewers. I can still remember making a hat out of newspaper. 🙂

      I hope that you are able to share the book with your nieces and nephews.

      All my best,


  8. My children watched Mr Rodgers and so did I. I really enjoyed it so much. I’d love a copy of your book. Thank you for the chance

    • You’re very welcome, Donamae. I love Mister Rogers so much that I wish I could give away a copy to everyone! 🙂

      I loved watching the show with my children. We have some special memories of those times.

      Thanks for your note!


    • Thanks, Debbie, and thanks for your comment.

      I loved writing this book, and I hope it brings joy to people just as he did.

      Take care,


  9. This is such a wonderful book, Aimee. I requested it from my local library, and then just purchased a copy that I will gift to one of my nieces. (I know the giveaway eligibility has expired, but I wanted you to know how much I enjoyed your book!)

    • Dawn, you are very kind to make time to comment. Thank you for ordering a library copy and also purchasing one for your niece! It really means a lot to me that you like the book. 🙂 Encouragement from other writers is a valuable and sustaining gift.

    • Thanks to everyone who entered this giveaway. I wish I could give a book to everyone who entered.

      Congratulations to the following winners:

      Sue Mortson, Shirley Socha, Terry Jacobsen, and Rachel McInnes.

      I regularly hold giveaways for books on my blog as well as through my newsletter. There’s a new giveaway up right now for one of Dawn Prochovnic’s books.

      Let’s stay connected!


  10. Loved Mr Rogers as a child. Also Mr Dress-up, Today’s Special, and Pokadot door! Kids these days will never know the pain of watching TV and having to adjust the antenna. Only to find out that watching a show through random lines and snow like fuzz was as good as you could get it. I’d love a copy of your book. Thank you for the chance.

    • I loved Mr. Dress-up as a child too. I’m glad that you have good memories of these shows.

      The names for this giveaway have been drawn, but keep on checking back for other posts. There’s a giveaway for a manuscript critique or one of Dawn Prochovnic’s books on right now until Monday, August 26. Just comment on that post to enter.

      I regularly give away books on my blog and offer special information and draws for newsletter subscribers as well.

      Thanks for your comment! It’s fun to remember the days of adjusting the TV picture.


  11. A heartwarming picture book that celebrates the work of Mister Rogers and carries on his legacy of kindness   Mister Rogers is one of the most beloved television personalities, but before he was the man who brought us


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