Saturday, 11 June 2011

My Country

My Country by Ezekiel Kwaymullina, illustrated by Sally Morgan (Fremantle Press)
HB RRP $24.95
ISBN 9781921696916
Reviewed by Neridah McMullin

This book was inspired by my Nana and Gran, who passed on their love of country to me. When I wrote the book I imagined what it would have been like for them as little girls, playing in their country without a care in the world. At the same time, I wanted to encourage self-esteem in Indigenous youth as I feel Australia is in need of more Indigenous heroes. Because all heroes begin as children with a dream, hopefully books like this one bring them closer to that dream” – Ezekiel Kwaymullina

‘My Country’ is an Australian Aboriginal picture book to be enjoyed and celebrated.
It is a book to be poured over and shared between a parent and a child. Whilst the prose is simple and lyrical, it is perfectly matched with the acclaimed Sally Morgan’s illustrations, which are gorgeous and bright, and vivid and intricate. There are double spread pages full of wonder including a smiling sun, happy lightning clouds and friendly animals. There is such a strong feeling of being connected to the earth and the moon and the stars, it’s truly heartfelt and beautiful.

The little girl is on a journey of discovery and the reader is swept along with her. She feels completely safe with her country and is as ‘one’ with her environment. This is definitely something we should all aspire to and encourage our children to explore.

This is a delightful book for a very young audience, aged 3 – 5 years, and is a wonderful book to encourage the imagination and play discovery finding games, and games such as ‘peekaboo’.  For older readers, it’s the perfect book for ‘outdoor’ reading along with paper and pencils to let the imagination flow.

Sally Morgan is a best selling author and internationally renowned painter. She is the author of ‘My Place’, which has now sold over 600,000 copies nationally. This is her first book in over a decade.

Ezekiel Kwaymullina is from the Palyku people from the Pilbara region of Western Australia and this is Ezekiel’s third children’s picture book.

Neridah McMullin is the author of two books for children. Her next book is an Indigenous folklore story called 'Kick it to me!'. It’s an ‘aussie rules’ story that’s being endorsed by the Australian Football League. Neridah loves family, footy, and doing yoga with her cat Carlos (who also loves footy). www.neridahmcmullin.com

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