Monday, 23 September 2013

A Bus Called Heaven

A Bus Called Heaven by Bob Graham (Walker Books)
PB RRP $16.95
ISBN 9781406343717
Reviews by Anastasia Gonis

A Bus Called Heaven is a superbly detailed book with strong messages on the importance of unity and community. Its story will move readers of all ages, as will the intricate illustrations in watercolour and pen that speak volumes.

An abandoned bus with the name Heaven taped to it above the front windows mysteriously appears in Stella’s street. Stella claims it for her neighbourhood and a transformation of incredible proportions begins. The word ours initiates friendships, togetherness, ideas and community spirit within the till now isolated people that lived close to, and beyond, Stella’s house.

The bus is pushed into Stella’s house but still protrudes onto the pavement. The word ‘regulations’ is scoffed at by Stella, for she has created her own regulations. With the contribution of the entire neighbourhood, the bus is turned into a leisure area. Even the graffiti gang switch style to decorate the bus with impressive artwork instead of defacing it.

The word ‘regulations’ reappears, this time in the form of a threat when the bus is towed to the Boneyard. Will Stella’s challenge to the Boneyard Boss win the neighbourhood back their bus?

New life and new beginnings are portrayed by the chicks that are discovered in a nest beneath the bonnet of Heaven.

‘This book is endorsed by Amnesty International UK as contributing to a better understanding of Human Rights and the values that underpin them’.

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