Thursday 8 October 2020

Ling Li’s Lantern

Ling Li’s Lantern –
by Steve Heron and Benjamin Johnston (Midnight Sun Publishing) Picture Book  RRP $29.99 ISBN: 9781925227673

Reviewed by Jeffery E Doherty

Ling Li’s Lantern is a beautifully illustrated picture book about compassion and kindness. It is written in the style of a traditional Chinese folktale, where a father tries to show his children the true meaning of wisdom.

Ling Li and her two older brothers are set a challenge to test their wisdom. They have one day to go to the marketplace and return with something to fill their empty pagoda. Ling Li’s brothers are clever and practical and complete the task quickly. How can she prove herself to her father, when she returns from the marketplace with only a lantern to light her way?  

Ling Li’s Lantern is a heart-warming story that shows the reader that a kind and compassionate heart is more valuable than money or winning a challenge. Steve Heron’s story is wonderfully imagined and enhanced through the delightful illustrations of Benjamin Johnston. He has captured the cultural feel of the story perfectly. His generally muted colour palette makes Ling Li’s yellow outfit shine, like the bright lantern she returns home with.

This is a lovely and quiet picture book with a great message. It would make an excellent addition to any child’s library. Definitely recommended.

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