The premise of this book is sibling death and how we remember and continue to celebrate the lives of those we lose. The child who has passed in this story is ‘Johnny.’
The story is told in a gentle and touching way and would give lovely ideas to any family going through similar grief, for example, wearing something that belonged to the person who died, to keep playing their favourite games and still having a birthday celebration to remember them.
Making up ‘cloud stories’ is an important part of this book – each illustration has a cloud-like setting to place Johnny’s presence into the story. The story could have been enriched, I feel, by including a distinct reflection of one of the stories the brother had made up before he passed, or something more significant in the illustrated cloud pictures – maybe a symbol to show he is watching over the family and is still forever present. An example of this could be a wombat in the clouds, just like the t-shirt that Jonny used to wear and that his sister now wears to hold him dear.
Overall, a lovely explanation of loss and grief and the celebration of life – told gently. And an inspiring springboard to use when death touches our lives, for creating personalised rituals to keep those that leave us present and remembered.
ISBN: PB – 9781925675382 – $14.99 HB – 9781925675399 – $24.99
Big Sky Publishing