Naomi Hunter (text), Karen Erasmus (illus.), Finding Heaven, Empowering Resources, Dec 2017, 36pp., $17.00 (pbk), ISBN: 9781925592061
Naomi Hunter has written a deeply personal tale in Finding Heaven. This is the story of a young girl, Summer, who is struggling after the death of her older brother. At first she just cries and cries, until she decides to set off to find heaven – presumably the place she has been told her brother is now. She draws a map and packs her bag – and learns a lesson along the way.
Hunter has been ambitious in both the content she is tackling and the language she is using in this book. Although at times the sentences could be simpler and sharper, there is much to entice the reader.
Erasmus’ painterly illustrations support the tone of this book – soft, delicate and warm. Summer’s dog being cocooned in butterflies on his way to visit heaven is a particular delight.
This book is a resource that could be reached for by teachers and parents alike. The lesson that Summer learns could really help another young reader going through the same tragic experience.
Reviewed by Madeleine Crofts