Review: Sing To The Moon by Nansubuga Nagadya Isdahl and Sandra van Doorn
Being indoors on a rainy day is boring. One little boy dreams of all the things he could be doing while the rain comes down and wishes on the moon for the rain to stop. Then he finds Jjajja – his grandfather. Together they play games and tell stories until a rainy day no longer looks like a miserable thing.
A gentle, rhyming story which tackles something known to every small child – boredom.
In a day and age when adults are always on the go, and children’s hours are filled for them, it is hardly surprising that they are afraid to stop. This beautiful picture book introduces the idea that time to entertain ourselves is one of the most precious and magical things we can experience.
It is also a touching look at a relationship between a child and his grandfather. Grandparents often play an important part in a young child’s world and picture books about these relationships have been published before … but, most often, the protagonist is white. This story focuses on a grandfather who tells African myths. On a boy who climbs guava trees. Culture is about far more than skin-colour. Food and stories, music and landscape make up the things we associate with our families. It is tremendously important that children from all cultures are represented in book-corners and libraries.
I love the illustrations and the whole book design – it shimmers and sparkles with the magic of Jjajja’s stories. I love the dark pages with patches of candle-light – they made me feel as if I was in the dark house, sitting around the table with the characters in the book.
A reassuring and uplifting story which will help children change their approach to rainy days and boredom in general.
Thanks to Lantana Publishing for my copy of Sing To The Moon. Opinions my own.