Imagine if, on an ordinary day, after a morning of studying tadpoles and drawing birds at school, war came to your town and turned it to rubble. Imagine if you lost everything and everyone, and you had to make a dangerous journey all alone. Imagine that there was no welcome at the end, and no room for you to even take a seat at school. And then a child, just like you, gave you something ordinary but so very, very precious. In lyrical, deeply affecting language, Nicola Davies’s text combines with Rebecca Cobb’s expressive illustrations to evoke the experience of a child who sees war take away all that she knows.
This book is deep and scary and poignant and will stir your soul. The little girl does lose everything though—her mother, father and baby brother all die (not gory, but she comes home to just a black pit where she left her happy family in the morning) as do all of her school friends, so I’d recommend parents read this before reading it to children to make sure it’s appropriate for your child’s maturity level.