This Is My Rock
Flying Eye Books
There’s a David McCord poem I’m fond of with the same title as this book; that and the goat on the cover proudly proclaiming ownership of the tall structure instantly predisposed me to think positively about David Lucas’ latest offering. I most certainly was not disappointed. In fact I love everything about it.
In short, the young goat already mentioned, standing atop that rock announces to all that dare approach, that it is his and not theirs. (Those of us who work with children will be familiar with that one. You need to share, we tell our charges.)
It’s not only goats who challenge him: a large eagle, a woeful-looking bear, several wolves,
even a tiny bird (watch that one) are all sent packing. Goat stands firm atop that rock of his – all alone and unsure of his next move.
Time passes; he calls, dances
and starts to feel hungry. Hmm maybe it’s not quite such fun being all by himself, thinks that strong- willed character. Perhaps it’s time to start reaching out …
Everything about this book is a delight: the unusual colour palette, the borders, every page layout and design, the story of course – it’s told entirely through dialogue with the minimum words,
though they surely pack a punch; and the fact that it’s not the stroppy goat who has the final word, or should it be ‘tweet’?
Having read the dedication inside the front cover, one could read all sorts of things into Lucas’ short story but that’s the thing about a good book – it leaves plenty of space for readers to make their own interpretations. Readers who could well be in the early stages of their reading journey are just one of the possible audiences: everything about it makes the book perfect for beginners (reading scheme books just don’t stand up against the likes of this), but it’s much too good to be confined to beginners alone.