'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Thursday, 1 March 2018

Review: Kate and the Thing

Kate and the Thing is written and illustrated by the hugely talented Heidi Cooper Smith.  Her illustrations are just divine. The back cover is just as gorgeous as the front, drawing you in with the soft movement of falling leaves.

This is a story of starting at a new school.  Feeling alone and afraid, Kate brings an imaginary friend (the Thing) along with her to help with the transition. The Thing is illustrated in white--soft and snuggly, gentle and kind--just what a lonely child needs.

As the story progresses, Kate and the Thing have some lovely experiences in this new environment. The Thing is impressed upon with the colours of these new experiences, like beginning new memories with a clean slate. As the Thing becomes more colourful and Kate settles into her new life, she no longer needs the Thing's support and is able to extend herself to help another new child.

A beautiful, gentle tale of starting anew, overcoming challenges and supporting others. A fabulous book to share with children beginning at a new school or even just the beginning of a new year in a new class. It's also a beautiful introduction to discussing how a new child may feel and how the 'old' kids can help to make them feel welcome.

The text and illustrations beautifully complement each other, creating a comforting mood like a soft cuddle throughout the story.

A great resource for classrooms. Wombat books has some useful teachers notes available to integrate this story into classroom activities. I highly recommend this book.

Title: Kate and the Thing
Author/Illustrator: Heidi Cooper Smith
Publisher: Wombat Books, $24.99
Publication Date: March 2018
Format: Hard cover
ISBN: 9781925563290
For ages: 3 - 8
Type: Picture Book

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