A Song of Gladness

A Song of Gladness
Michael Morpurgo and Emily Gravett
Two Hoots

We’ve all in one way or another been affected by the lockdowns over the past year or so. This gorgeous timely book was inspired by a blackbird in Michael Morpurgo’s garden during the first lockdown and truly it is as the front cover says, ‘a story of hope for us and our planet’.

It begins with the author standing having a ‘conversation’ with said blackbird wherein he tells it of the sadness everyone is feeling. This precipitates an idea in the blackbird’s mind and he sings it out to the still sleepy fox near the shed. And so begins a chain reaction with the song passing from one to another with creatures all over the world, each in its own way joining in, 

until the entire animal world is singing a song of forgiveness. 

Not yet though the author who asks and receives permission from the blackbird to sing with them.

One can truly hope that humans the world over will during this last year or so, have rediscovered their connection with the natural world, and as Michael Morpurgo reminds us, will now take responsibility to care, not only for our fellow humans but for all living things on our precious planet.

Beautifully told with the author’s characteristic empathy and gentleness, this very personal, moving story speaks to us all, children and adults, capturing both our shared experience and our hearts. Emily Gravett’s illustrations brilliantly express the vital interconnectedness inherent in the text, as they carry us along from page to page swept up in the musicality both of Michael’s words, and the animals’ voices united in a final glorious harmony.

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