Reviewed by Kathryn Duncan
Following on the success of their Zen Tails series, New Frontier have produced a series of board books of the same themes. Aimed at the 2-6 year old reader, each story offers a simple message easy for young children to appreciate.
The messages are simple. In Love is helping, Pierre, Bruno and Gilbert work together to build a dam; Fur Ball doesn’t help, but finds a special job of their own that contributes to the end result. Love is helping reminds the reader of watching a group of four year old children use their individual abilities, without judgement, or criticism, to build a tower.
Happiness is sharing is a concept that young children struggle to understand. Ownership is everything. Whilst Bruno, Gilbert and Pierre share their books and balloons, Grizzel Bear prefers not to share. But, he is not happy and it is in the simple act of sharing his balloons where he finds happiness.
Nancy Bevington’s illustrations are colourful and clear and allows the non reader to enjoy the story being read to them. Once the story is known, they are books that children can look at, and enjoy independently, over and over again.
Love is Helping and Happiness is Sharing, by Peter Whitfield, illus by Nancy Bevington
New Frontier, 2008
HB rrp $9.95