Posted on 4th April, 2023, under Book Reviews
This beautifully illustrated book is a story portraying sadness and grief. It is written carefully and honestly by an author who took his own suffering and used it to support others to understand that sadness is real and we do not need to hide it. This tale is about loss and is told in a way that illustrates raw pain and beautiful memories of the person who passed away. The message in the book is about being sad because something unbearable happened to cause sadness and it is okay to be vulnerable and show the sadness. I believe this is such an important message. Everyone, young and old, must allow themselves time and space to express their feelings.
Working with children and families for 20 years, I had many discussions with parents/carers who needed support to prepare their children for the passing of a relative or friend. However, breaking such sad news and knowing how to support children through grief when you, as an adult, are also suffering this same grief or loss is difficult. I feel this book is appropriate for children from age ten to adulthood. However, I suggest the story should be shared within a family rather than in isolation. For example, when I read this book, I felt empathy for the author and sadness for friends I have loved and lost. When you feel despair, it is essential that there is someone around to share your emotions with and listen to you.
Michael Rosen is a writer, poet, and performer and he has an amazing way of sharing stories that people, young and old, can relate to. Author of many books, one well-known and loved book by Rosen that the children I have worked with love is, “We’re Going on a Bear Hunt”. A former British Children’s Laureate, Michael Rosen, lives in London. For more information on the wonderful books check out his website and also Twitter account.
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