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Mary J. Blige to Release Debut Children’s Book ‘Mary Can!’ in 2023

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Of her many accolades, Mary J. Blige can soon add “children’s book author” to her already impressive list of achievements. The “Just Fine” singer shared the news about her debut effort on Instagram on Wednesday (Nov. 16) and revealed that story — which will be published by HarperCollins next year — is title Mary Can! and reflects her personal struggles while growing up.

Mary Can! is an inspirational and motivating story about a young girl who proves that anyone can make their dreams come true if they just believe in themselves,” Blige captioned the book’s official cover art, which features an illustration of a young Black girl sitting in front of a brownstone building and drawing in green sidewalk chalk.

“It’s such a personal story for me, based off my own experiences as a child and even as an adult. I was so used to people telling me ‘no’ and that I ‘couldn’t’ which only motivated me more,” the 51-year-old singer continued. “My hope with this book is that it instills in kids from an early age that they can do anything they aspire to do. There are no limits to what they can accomplish!”

Blige elaborated on the story behind Mary Can! in an interview with People, explaining that she wants “kids to know that there are no limits to what they can accomplish. My wish is for my nieces and nephews to feel they can achieve anything they imagine. Growing up, I was constantly told that my dreams were too big, too bold, and too far out of reach. I think we need to reinforce that nothing is impossible.”

The announcement of Blige’s children’s book comes on the heels of her multiple 2023 Grammy Award nominations. She earned a total of six nods, including best R&B performance for “Here With Me” featuring Anderson .Paak; best traditional R&B performance for “Good Morning Gorgeous”; best R&B song for “Good Morning Gorgeous”; and best R&B album for Good Morning Gorgeous — the album and its title track, meanwhile, earned bids in the album of the year and record of the year categories. 

Mary Can! will be released via HarperCollins on March 28, 2023.

See Mary J’s book announcement below.

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