On the third day of Christmas...

Refuge

Anne Booth (text) and Sam Usher (illustrations)

This is a beautiful tale of a man and a woman who have a baby. Such a sense of love and joy is conveyed both through text and illustration that this could be the story of any family. In fact, the couple are unnamed throughout, but their visitors and the setting help us see that they are Mary and Joseph. The focus is on the fact that they are refugees, trying to find safety in an uncertain world with the help of strangers along the way. Sadly, this would be an excellent book to use as a starting point for current events; however, it is also a book to be enjoyed in its own right.

Illustration and text work together magically. The writing is deliberately simple, yet warm and emotive- She took the baby, and kissed him. She smelt his sweet baby breath, and felt his soft, warm, baby skin and how his lashes tickled her cheek, as he sleepily nuzzled her neck. The illustrations are stunning and tell their own story alongside the text- the love, the awe, the worry, the weariness and finally, the relief- all these emotions are seen in the characters and deepen the story as it unfolds. 

When I bought this book on Monday, a sticker on the front says £5 from the sale will go direct to War Child. There is more information about  this organisation on their website https://www.warchild.org.uk/

Nosy Crow   ISBN: 978-0857637413