Tuesday 15 October 2019

Once, I was Loved

Once, I was Loved by Belinda Landsberry (EK Books) RRP HB $24.99
ISBN 9781925820027

Reviewed by Kylie Buckley

Once, I was Loved is the latest picture book from talented author/illustrator Belinda Landsberry, creator of the acclaimed children’s book, Anzac Ted.
Told from a second person point of view, Tock, the long-eared toy rabbit is the narrator of the story and speaks directly to his young audience.

“Hey, it’s me! Tock! Down here in the Charity Box.”

On the eve of heading to the charity shop, the much-loved rabbit reflects on the ups and downs of his long life. First, Tock introduces us to his original owner, five-year-old Sam, who adored him for many years. Sam then gives Tock to a young boy who is less fortunate than herself. The tale continues with Tock given up, passed down, or lost and finding a new owner each time. The rabbit is loved by seven different owners over the decades, each one with a unique story and a snippet of history revealed, from war times to the introduction of the internet.

While the narrative is sad in parts, this book also depicts Tock as a very lucky rabbit to have been loved for so many decades by so many gorgeous children. The tale reminds us that people will come in and out of our life for a myriad of reasons, and letting go can sometimes be hard. However, if we are always loved and are given opportunities to experience life’s joys, then we have lived a great life.

Once, I was Loved is a beautiful story suitable for children aged 4+.

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