Letters to My Father by Ann Budden (Pacific Books) PB RRP $14.95 pp $6.00 through contacting email@example.com ISBN: 9780987066039
Reviewed by Ellie Royce
Letters to My Father is firstly the story of three sisters growing up in Ipswich Queensland while the Second World War rages in the near north. The girls and their mother run the farm while their father is away fighting the Japanese. Secondly, this book offers an interactive element in the form of a workbook, containing discussion ideas and questions, background information to the story and even wartime recipes.
The story is told through the eponymous ‘letters’ from Ruth to her father, focusing on life at home in a small town and contrasting diary entries by their father which describe (sometimes quite graphically) his experiences as a Prisoner-of-War. A thoroughly researched, thought- provoking and visually pleasing publication, this book would be a useful and engaging classroom tool. As stated, however, some of the diary content is very graphic and should probably be assessed for suitability on a case by case basis by teachers and librarians.
The book is recommended for readers between 11-14 years.