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REMIXED (Aree Chung, 2022)
In Mixed City, colours mix when they fall in love. Things are bright and joyful at the beginning of the story, but families change. All sorts of worries go through the characters’ heads as the characters experience loss and separation: Am I good enough? Did I make a mistake? Will they get along? Will he like me? But Remixed (Macmillan, 2022) reaffirms to the reader that with open minds and hearts, love grows.
The message of this picture book – that families don’t always stay the same, they remix, blending past and present – is perfectly executed through the use of colour, and is accessible to very young children. Fun and bright illustrations give this a pitch perfect, light-hearted feel, great for readers with newly blended families. Indeed, this would be an especially good read for a child meeting new members of their family for the first time because whilst change isn’t easy, things usually turn out ok, and sometimes much better than before.
EVERYTHING CHANGES (Clare Helen Welsh, Åsa Gilland 3-7yrs)
Laughing and playing together as a family on the beach, it seems the happy, warm days of summer will never end. Then, everything changes. Mummy and daddy say they can’t live together anymore, and sad, worried feelings begin to emerge – It’s not fair! Was it all my fault? But, as time passes and the seasons change, it becomes clearer that hard times won’t always be quite so hard . . .
Everything Changes (Little Tiger Press, 2022) lyrical book about the difficult emotions a child can feel when their parents break up, with an optimistic message of hope and resilience. Gorgeous illustrations and an emotive colour palette perfectly capture the nuances of emotion felt by both the child and parents during a separation. Much like Pat Thomas’s My Family’s Changing, Claire Masurel’s Two Homes and Patrice Karst’s The Invisible String, this story offers a way to help children understand their feelings during big changes in their family unit.
A sensitively told story that addresses the tricky subject of divorce and parent separation with care and understanding.
MUM AND DAD GLUE (Kes Gray, Lee Wildish 3-7yrs)
Told in a soothing rhyme, Mum and Dad Glue (Hodder, 2010) follows the main character as he navigates the worries that occur to him when his parents separate. The little boy searches for a glue to hold his family together, but he eventually realises there is no glue for parents and that’s ok, because despite his parents’ break up, their love for him will always remain. The boy is encouraged to be strong and look past the hurt into the future, making this book more suited to families with an acrimonious breakup.