Wednesday, 6 April 2011

The Sky Dreamer

The Sky Dreamer by Anne Morgan, illustrated by Céline Eimann (IP Kidz)
HB RRP $26.00, eBook $13.00
ISBN 9781921479977
Reviewed by Margaret Warner

In a very sensitive and gentle way, this book invites the reader to experience the journey of a child coping with grief after the death of a sibling.

On the night before Liam’s birthday he experiences a dream connection with his sister, Cassie as she arrives in her boat the Sky Dreamer, floating just outside his window above a silver ghost gum. Cassie welcomes her brother aboard and off they sail into many adventures while Cassie sews her brother a birthday present. As they journey through the sky, Cassie encourages Liam to learn to sail the Sky Dreamer by himself through the many hazards of thunder, lightning, meteorites, past distant planets and comets. Gradually he gains confidence to steer on his own and all the while his sister sews his birthday present. As daylight appears, Liam leaves the Sky Dreamer with his special birthday present, which will brighten his life.

Liam’s journey with Cassie in the Sky Dreamer is a beautiful analogy of a child’s journey through the grey times of the grief to very gradually learning to live without a sibling and once again experience the sunny, happy times. The dreamlike quality and changing colours of the beautiful illustrations reflect the emotions that Liam experiences as he learns to steer the Sky Dreamer. His stark, grey world of grief is mirrored in the grey tones of the background as he stares at the cloud formations in the sky. This contrasts with the changing colours in illustrations throughout the narrative, ending with the sunny colours of the final illustration.

This beautiful book very gently explores the process of loss and healing and would be very comforting to share with a child going through this process.

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