You Can do Anything (Hip and Hop) by Akala

You Can do Anything (Hip and Hop)

Written by Akala
Illustrated by Sav Akyuz

Baby and Toddler   3+ readers   Summer Reading   eBooks   
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The Lovereading4Kids comment

Akala, award winning hip hop artist, gives power to the kids in this uplifting, lively story which carries a positive message that with hard work and practise you can be anything you want to be. Hip, the rapping Hippo, encourages his friend Hop to learn to ride a bike so they can both take part in the Blueberry Hill cycle race. After a few falls Hop feels disheartened and wants to give up but Hip, with an inspiring rap, gets Hop back on his bike and with practise he perfects balance, brakes and steering to show off his new skills at the cycle race. 'Don't let anyone tell you no. Focus on your dreams and go!' Colourful, funky artwork from Sav Akyuz adds to the streetwise appeal.

Ben Bailey Smith (aka rapper Doc Brown) has also used his rapping talent creating I am Bear, also illustratated by Sav Akyuz.


You Can do Anything (Hip and Hop) by Akala

A new picture book series from the MOBO award-winning hip hop artist Akala, bursting with bright colour artwork from acclaimed illustrator Sav. Hip, a wise hippo; and Hop, his energetic bird friend are taking part in the Blueberry Hill bike race. Hop struggles at first, but with help from Hip, they learn that you can achieve anything if you put your mind to it! Focus on your dreams and go! This series aims to inspire children to grow up as happy, emotionally intelligent and socially responsible human beings. Part prose, part rap, this book is packed full of rhyme and rhythm, making it perfect to read with young children.

Speaking about why he wrote the book Akala said “I am grateful to have grown up with hip-hop and the inspirational messages it shares about aspiration and self-motivation. Hip-hop can break down barriers to reading, education and engage a more diverse readership. When I was growing up I don’t remember seeing a world that I could relate to in picture books. In Hip and Hop I use rhythm and rhymes inspired by the music I love, combined with an inner-city setting, to motivate children to turn self-doubt on its head and pursue their dreams.”

Pete Marley, Commissioning Editor for Children’s Books at Oxford University Press, said “the connection between hip-hop and picture books is clear when you think about it. Both forms use rhythm, rhyme, and repetition to captivate and engage their audiences. In Hip and Hop Akala’s exceptional storytelling and Sav’s breath-taking artwork come together to create a distinctive book that we hope will appeal to children from all backgrounds.”


“Inspiring children to grow up into happy, socially responsible human beings is at the book’s heart; the feel-good refrain of “you can do anything” is a powerful message of perseverance, determination and following your dreams.” - Fiona Noble, The Bookseller

About the Author


Akala is a leading hip-hop artist and rapper, who was named Best Hip Hop Act at the MOBO Awards in 2006. He founded ‘The Hip Hop Shakespeare Company’ in 2009 to engage young people with Shakespeare. He has featured on TV programmes across Channel 4, ITV2, MTV, Sky Arts and the BBC speaking on wide ranging subjects from music, youth engagement and British/African-Caribbean culture. He published a collection of short stories Doublethink in 2015 and a graphic novel Visions in 2016. Hip and Hop is his first children’s book. Follow Akala on Instagram here.

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Book Info


32 pages


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Oxford University Press

Publication date

6th July 2017




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