Kelly Rowland Tackles Life as a Working Mom in Her New Children's Book: 'I Want Parents To Know It Is Ok To Feel What They're Experiencing'

The Grammy-winning singer pens a deeply personal picture book, Always with You, Always with Me, about a working mom caring for her school-age son.

Kelly Rowland in black top
Photo: Cécile Boko

Singer-songwriter Kelly Rowland credits Toni Morrison for inspiring her latest project: "She said, 'If there's a book you want to read but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it.'" For Rowland, mom of Noah, 1, and Titan, 7, that book is Always With You, Always With Me, which grapples with the separation a mom and son feel when she leaves for work.

Although the mom in the story, cowritten with educator Jessica McKay, is a construction supervisor, Rowland drew on her experiences as a working musician for the book, due out April 26. "I'm a working mother. My friends are working mothers. The part in the book where the mother cries in the car, I have definitely seen those days," she says.

Parents caught up with Rowland after a performance.

Always with You, Always with Me book cover
Courtesy of Viking Books for Young Readers

What do you hope families learn from the story?

I want parents to know it is okay to feel what they're experiencing and to be honest about the emotional journey and anxiety that it causes. We all need to find the vocabulary to explain it to ourselves and our children.

Has a childhood book stuck with you?

My mother used to read me Love You Forever, by Robert Munsch. I adore the dynamic that it shows between a mother and a child.

How do you balance your kids' reading time with screen time?

We try our hardest not to do screen time during the week and have it on the weekends. And not all day on the weekends. It's hard sometimes because of how convenient it is. But we read a lot together, and Titan is enjoying reading books to his brother.

What kinds of books excite Titan?

He loves learning about animals, so Ultimate Reptile-Opedia, Discovering Sharks, and Science Comics Sharks are his faves.

Describe your perfect reading experience.

On a beach listening to the waves, in a hammock, curled up with my favorite book. The best!

This article originally appeared in Parents magazine's April 2022 issue as "Book Crush: Kelly Rowland's New Release." Want more from the magazine? Sign up for a monthly print subscription here

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles