Gabrielle Union & Dwayne Wade's Shady Baby Has An Important Message

Inspired by their daughter, Shady Baby shows kids how to stand up for what they believe in.

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There's a new boss baby in town, and she's taking a stand for kindness in the new children's book from Gabrielle Union and Dwayne Wade, Shady Baby. The couple's all-new story — inspired by their own daughter — focuses on what it means when kids stand up for what they believe in.

Both Union and Wade made announcements on their respective Instagram pages celebrating the book's upcoming release. Union's post tagged 2-year-old daughter Kaavia James' page in the post and wrote, "@kaaviajames has an opinion... and soon she will share it with the world." The actress also wrote that their new picture book "teaches kids to use their moral compass and inner strength to choose kindness and compassion and to stick up for themselves and others."

The story follows main character, Shady Baby, during playtime at a park where she encounters a group of kids picking on others, according to the book's synopsis on the publisher Harper Collins' website. After confronting the unkind kids and giving them "her famous side eye," Shady Baby experiences some hurt feelings herself, opening the door for others to show her compassion in return.

In his Instagram post about the book, NBA superstar Wade explains that in addition to teaching kids how to stand up for what is right, writing a children's book that focuses on a Black main character was paramount for the couple. "It was important to @gabunion and I that this story be about a little Black girl for other little Black girls and boys to see themselves as main characters and for all children to see us in leadership positions," he wrote.

In the same cheeky spirit that this adorable picture book promises to bring, a similar post on their daughter's Instagram page highlighted the focus of the book's inspiration noting, "It was finally time to put my wisdom and realness into a book. Since I’m already busy teaching @gabunion & @dwyanewade 24/7 - why not the world too." Toddlers (and their parents) everywhere surely will relate to this sentiment.

Although Shady Baby is the couple's first joint book venture, Union has previously authored two books, including her 2017 memoir We're Going To Need More Wine. Also inspired by the couple's daughter, Union released the picture book, Welcome To The Party in 2020 to help celebrate non-traditional families, O Magazine reported. After struggling with infertility, the couple welcomed their daughter into their already blended family via surrogate in 2018.

Shady Baby is currently available for pre-order from publisher Harper Collins for $18.99 ahead of the book's May 18, 2021 release date.

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