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The Day War Came Hardcover – Picture Book, September 4, 2018
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—The New York Times Book Review
This gracefully written poem conveys the extensive amount of suffering that war brings...An absolutely beautiful story that penetrates the heart and seeds hope when there is little of it.
—Booklist (starred review)
Sketchy, child-friendly illustrations and poetic prose do not shy away from the realities of war but also inject a note of hope in this powerful picture book...A sensitive and finely tuned message about the cost of war and its impact on children without resorting to graphic violence and pessimism.
—School Library Journal
This first-person poem’s words are moving...this is a strong statement on the impact of refugee crises upon children.
Gentle, childlike drawings by Cobb (There’s an Owl in My Town) help soften the blows in this story by Davies (King of the Sky), published in association with Help Refugees, about a girl in a country at war.
About the Author
Rebecca Cobb has illustrated several picture books, including The Paper Dolls by Julia Donaldson. She has been short-listed for the Kate Greenaway Medal twice. She lives in England.
Help Refugees is a grassroots project that supports more than seventy projects benefitting refugees worldwide. www.helprefugees.org
- Grade Level : 1 - 4
- Item Weight : 1.1 pounds
- Hardcover : 32 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1536201731
- ISBN-13 : 978-1536201734
- Product Dimensions : 9.56 x 0.43 x 11.38 inches
- Reading level : 6 - 9 years
- Publisher : Candlewick; Illustrated Edition (September 4, 2018)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #772,500 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Let me explain. We first meet a little girl who is happy at home with her family, mum, dad and baby brother. She goes off to school and whilst there a war breaks out. She finds what is left of her home, just a blackened hole and so she is all alone. She tells us about her journey in which she ran, walked, rode on a truck and then on a boat that nearly sank. She then ends up in a place full of huts.
She talks about how the war has gotten underneath her skin, behind her eyes – would a little child really think like this? She doesn’t state any feelings towards losing her family or being alone. There is no mention of her being scared. She then peaks in the window of a school and wants to join in the class but she is told by the teacher there is no room for her, there is no chair. Then a little boy brings her a chair and she starts to feel happy.
I so wanted to like this book as I believe that children need books that are not all lovely and beautiful and full of fun, I believe they also need books that tell them what is really happening in the world. This feels though like it hasn’t been written for little children, more an adult writing about a child for other adults to read.
Gosh, I hope I’m making sense. There is no mention of where the little girl lived – children will want to know this. There is no mention of her family and what happened to them – children will want to know this too. No mention of her feelings, of where she ended up, of who is now looking after her – There are questions children will want to know the answers to.
I noticed at the back that Ms. Davies has explained how she originally published it as a poem on the Guardian Newspapers website and how well received it was, even having lots of people taking photos of empty chairs. As I stated above, this story is for adults, hence the reaction her poem got on the site.
To make the book truly understood by children it needs some tweaking. As it stands I believe the book is beautiful, engaging and powerful, it’s just not a story for children and this is who it is market towards.
Book Reviewed on Whispering Stories Book Blog
*I received a free copy of this book, which I voluntarily reviewed
This book took my breath away. This is not a soft story-it is a hard hitting look at the struggle for refugees, not just by being torn away from their homes by war but also as a result of ostracization by the new communities they arrive in. This is not an easy book but it is a necessary one. This simple words are full of impact, the characters drawn so lovingly but when that dark charcoal ash smothers the pages, you are lead right into the horrifying reality of a child who loses everything and everyone and then has to go on the run to survive. You feel this child's longing, the rejection they experience but you also witness the glimmer of hope, through another child's actions that are pure and full of compassion.
I highly recommend this book. This book is a beautiful dedication to the refugees and an eye opener that even the simplest of actions can have the deepest effect. This book in the end embraces the beautiful uniqueness of every child symbolized through the beautiful unique chairs that gives each one of them a “seat” to be included.
¡Olé Namaste! Eve Costarelli
Thank you to Jessica Kingsley Publishers for sending me a copy of this book. All opinions stated are my own.
Written from the point of view of a young girl who goes about her day when suddenly war hits her town. Now everything this young girl loved, and enjoyed doing, is gone. Forced to flew, and look for a new home, this young girl's brave, and heartbreaking journey will invoke empathy and understanding from even this book's youngest readers.
What this powerful story tells, and helps readers see, and understand on a child's level, is how war destroys and takes away all that people know. Like the young girl in this story, war makes refugees out of people who have had everything taken from them, including their homes, their families, their way of lives, and their sense of belonging. This book is a moving reminder that like this child, refugees, are individuals just like the rest of us, and have the same wants and needs we all have.