Synopses & Reviews
Cartwheel moves to a new country with her auntie, and everything is strange: the animals, the plantsandmdash;even the wind. An old blanket gives Cartwheel comfort when sheandrsquo;s sadandmdash;and a new blanket just might change her world.and#160;and#160;This multiculturaland#160;story of friendship is about leaving home, moving to a foreign and strange place, and finding a new friend. Itand#39;s a story for all who have experienced change. Irena Kobaldandrsquo;s poetic text, paired with Kate Greenaway medalist Freya Blackwoodand#39;s powerful paintings, renders an emotional and heart-warming story about two children from diverse backgrounds coming together to become new friends.and#160;
"While serving as a Peace Corps volunteer, Rumford was a teacher in Chad, and the authentic details illuminate the spare text and beautiful artwork. On double-page spreads, the colored-pencil, ink, and pastel images echo the wordsand#8217; elemental rhythms as they contrast golden-hued portraits of the children happily learning with dark, rain-drenched scenes of the school disappearing. The building eventually vanishes, but "it doesnand#8217;t matter. The letters have been learned and taken away by the children."...Without a heavy message, this spare and moving offering will leave kids thinking about the daily lives of other young people around the world."and#8212;Booklist, starred review
"The illustrations are dramatic and inviting, with the black linework strong yet casual and nimble in its delineation of the excited kids and their self-built surroundings; more immediately striking is the array of bright colors, in mottled, strongly resisting pigments that sometimes suggest fresco, sometimes crayon, against the richly textured sandy-gold walls of the mud school. The notion that school on the other side of the world is both different and similar will be interesting to schoolgoers and aspirants, and this could elicit discussion about other kinds of ways schools could and do work."and#8212;The Bulletin
* andquot;Loneliness, cultural displacement, tentative friendship, and an explosion of sharing and kindness are accessible even to very young readers...An amazingly lovely import.andquot;
andmdash;Kirkus, starred review
andquot;With its bold visual metaphors, andquot;My Two Blanketsandquot; ingeniously captures a childand#39;s efforts to weave the old with the new.andquot;
andmdash;New York Times Book Review
andquot;The illustrations, a combination of watercolor and oils, heighten the effect of the thought-provoking story. Just the right format for children to think about immigrants and friendship.andquot;
It is the first day of school in Chad, Africa. Children are filling the road.
"Will they give us a notebook?" Thomas asks.
"Will they give us a pencil?"
"Will I learn to read?"
But when he and the other children arrive at the schoolyard, they find no classroom, no desks. Just a teacher. "We will build our school," she says. "This is our first lesson."
James Rumford, who lived in Chad as a Peace Corps volunteer, fills these pages with vibrant ink-and-pastel colors of Africa and the spare words of a poet to show how important learning is in a country where only a few children are able to go to school.
It is the first day of school in Chad, Africa. Children are filling the road. But when Thomas and the other children arrive at the schoolyard, they find no classroom, no desks. Just a teacher. "We will build our school," she says. "This is our first lesson."
Moving is hard--but friends make it easier.
In this stunning multicultural picture book illustrated by Kate Greenaway Medalist Freya Blackwood, a young girl has moved to a new country with her auntie,and#160;and misses all sheand#39;s ever known. Everything in her new country feels so strange: the animals, the plants--even the wind. To comfort herself, she creates a safe place under her old blanket, which is made out of memories, thoughts, and reminders of home. After meeting a new friend in the park, the girl begins to weave a new blanket--one made of friendship, new words, and a renewed sense of belonging. Itand#39;s very different from the old blanket, but it eventually becomes just as warm and familiar--and one to share with her new friend.
and#160; and#160; and#160;Fans of Tricia Tusa, Helen Oxenbury, Marla Frazee, and Matt Phelan will delight in reading this warm story alongside Blackwoodand#39;s artwork.
About the Author
Irena Kobald is multi-lingual Austrian immigrant to Australia, who teaches aboriginal children in Australian outback communities (the closest shop is 250 kms away!). The children she teaches use English as a fifth language (many speak several Aboriginal languages).andnbsp;Freya Blackwood grew up in Orange in New South Wales, Australia. As the daughter of a painter and an architect, she was encouraged to draw from a young age, and produced many illustrated books as a child. andnbsp;She earned a design degree (Visual Communications) at the University of Technology, Sydney and then worked for several years in the film industry in Sydney and Wellington, New Zealand. Many of her books have been translated into other languages and can be read by people all over the world. She now lives back in Orange, New South Wales, Australia with her divine daughter Ivy, their rather naughty whippet Pivot, and four noisy chickens.