Author: Nicola Davies
Illustrator: Cathy Fisher
BUY – Perfect
Perfect is a very special book which opens up the subject of disability for young readers.
A pure and evocative story about a child’s struggle with expectations, disappointment, understanding and acceptance.
It most certainly took my breath away with its powerful imagery and masterful illustrations.
Children may find this story helpful, especially those who have had a similar experience, accepting or connecting with a child or sibling with a disability.
Perfect for all ages, though not a bedtime story me thinks.
Awaiting the homecoming of his new baby sister, a small boy imagines the wonderful things they will do together.
When she arrives, his dreams of playing, chasing and screaming with laughter are silenced. There is something wrong with this little baby, she doesn’t even cry.
Powerful emotions are played out, anticipation, disillusionment and the rejection of this little sibling.
The narrative is cleverly counterpointed by the boy’s observations of the swifts.
The longing of an only child for companionship, the wait for their return.
A wish to disappear at dusk with them, to escape grief.
Tremendous imagery is woven with carefully chosen words.
“Every morning they’d be back, snipping at the air between the rooftops with their scissory wings, their screams as sharp as arrows pointing to the stillness in my sister’s room.”
Magnificently illustrated by Cathy Fisher. Her stunning artwork, which like brilliant cinematography makes you gasp at both intensity and beauty.
The story is resolved with quiet skill.
A fledgling swift is found on the ground, undamaged, almost unrecognisable. Lifting it gentle he sees it is perfect and in that moment, realization transforms the child.
“Perhaps, I thought, she only needs a little help.”
Released from his hurt and fear he embraces his ability to care and love his little sister.
A bit of a tear jerker. Perfect!