Monday, 30 November 2015

Spider Iggy

Spider Iggy written by Aleesah Darlison and illustrated by Sarah Jane Hinder (Wombat Books)
HB RRP $24.99
ISBN 978-1-925139-33-4

Reviewed by Peta Biggin

No one ever seems to notice Spider Iggy.  He tries to be noticed and make friends but with no success.  All the while, he dreams of a place filled with colour and light and spiders like him.  Determined to leave his old life behind, he sets off on an adventure to find a place where he fits in.  To find a place he can call home.

Spider Iggy is the latest picture book by award-winning Australian author Aleesah Darlison.  It is a lovely book that encompasses themes of acceptance, belonging and bravery. 

We meet Spider Iggy as he attempts to engage with and befriend those around him.  Despite all his best efforts he is routinely shunned which makes him unhappy - a situation that many young children can relate to.  It is this that drives him to find a place where he belongs; friends that accept him; to follow his dreams.

It’s this message that I particularly love: Spider Iggy remains true to himself and goes in search of where he belongs, rather than change himself in order to be accepted.  It is not an easy journey as he faces many dangers as well as people and creatures that reject him on sight.  He does not give up, and listens as the wind whispers, ‘Be brave’.  This is a great message for young children as they learn how to be a part of the world around them: be who you are, be brave.

Spider Iggy is brought to life by the artwork of Sarah Jane Hinder.  Each full-page illustration is bold and playful.  There is an upbeat quality that lends itself well to the positive message of the story.

Aleesah Darlison is an award-winning author who has published over twenty picture books and novels for children of all ages.  Her stories cover such themes as courage, anti-bullying, friendship and self-belief.  When she isn’t writing she’s looking after her four children or taking her dog, Floyd, for long walks on the beach.  She can be found online at: http://www.aleesahdarlison.com/


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