Author/Illustrator: Matt James
Publisher: Groundwood Books, 2018
Themes: death, funerals, family
Opening: “No school for Norma!” said Norma, putting on her mother’s shoe. A few days earlier, there had been a phone call. Her great-uncle Frank had died, and today was for saying goodbye.
Summary: (from my library catalog) Although Norma does not understand all the rituals that happen when she attends a funeral with her family, she does enjoy playing with her cousin and feels the deceased would have liked the funeral.
Why I like this book: it is my personal belief that we do not talk about death enough. It was a mysterious thing to me as a child, especially when I was not allowed to attend funerals as a small child. This book reminds me, in the best way, of my first experience. It was not as bad as the grown-ups made it out to be. Share it – it’s beautiful.
Resources/Activities: to help make death a part of life, share this book with friends and relatives, bring it to class to share; companion titles: The Scar/ Charlotte Moundlic, The Tenth Good Thing About Barney/Judith Viorst, My Father’s Arms Are a Boat/Stein Erik Lunde.
For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.