Brave Adventures Little Girl
Iresha Herath and Oscar Fa
Little Steps Publishing
There’s often a very special bond between young children and their grandparents and so it is with four-year old Anika who visits her grandmother (Achi) and grandfather (Seeya) every Sunday.
Anika doesn’t feel brave when she tries new things: ‘I always feel funny in my tummy’ she tells Seeya.
But she loves to listen to Seeya’s stories of adventures he’s had in various parts of the world.
On this occasion he uses these to talk about how when he was faced with trying new things in various parts of the world he visited, he too frequently had a funny feeling in his tummy. Nevertheless he did the things anyway – swimming in a big lake being followed by what he imagined to be a crocodile,
leaving Sri Lanka to go to university in England and visiting Russia with his university for instance.
His mention of the Olympics brings Anika back to the present as she tells Seeya about learning to hop for the ‘Kinder Olympics’. (Practising hopping caused her to trip and fall during her visit) and she feels reassured by all she’s heard especially when her grandparents agree to come and watch her participate in the Kinder Olympics.
With Oscar Fa’s unusual illustrations that have gentleness and warmth about them, this sensitively told story inspired by the author’s own Sri Lankan family has at its heart loving family relationships, adventure, fear and over-coming of same but above all, love.
Also recently out from Little Steps Publishing
Where Do Teachers Go at Night?
Where Else Do Teachers Go at Night?
Harriet Cuming and Sophie Norsa
When I taught four year olds some of them were convinced that I slept at school. Now though we have the great reveal: two zany books written by Harriet Cuming experienced teacher tell in jaunty rhyme, what happens to the staff after the pupils have all departed from school for the day.
Those teachers certainly don’t confine themselves to one location either: they snorkel in the Great Barrier Reef,
skinny dip in the Caribbean, there’s even a spot of crocodile wrestling in Kakadu.
The second book has the energetic crew off on a new round of after school adventuring . There’s ice-skating in Iceland,
mountain climbing in the Andes as well as butterfly chasing in New Guinea. This reviewer hasn’t participated in any of those activities but has visited four of the locations mentioned in the books and ridden several elephants in India, albeit not in Mumbai.
Sophie Norsa’s watercolour and crayon illustrations show these wacky activities in such a way that children come away feeling they know something about each of the adventurers’ characters and eccentricities.
Fun and gently educational in a geographical sort of way.