Review Blog

Aug 14 2014

Lucas and Jack by Ellie Royce

cover image

Ill. by Andrew McLean. Working Title Press, 2014. ISBN 9781921504662.
(Age: 4-7) Recommended. Family. Grandparents. Nursing homes.
When Mum visits her grandfather, Lucas stays outside in the garden and waits for her. One day, while hoping that she will hurry up, Jack talks to him. Jack is his Pop's best friend in the nursing home, and they sit down on the garden seat together. Lucas, unsure of what to say, asks Jack what he did before, and Jack tells him that he was a farmer. This land was once all his. He points to several other people in the garden: the man in the wheelchair, Leo, was a great detective, the woman over there was a ballet dancer. Lucas asks Jack what he misses most about being in the home, and Jack tells him that he misses his dog. The two discuss their dogs and the next time Lucas comes to visit, her brings his dog and a connection is formed between the boy and the older men at the home.
This is a lovely tale of generations coming together, of seeing beyond the wheelchair and wrinkles, of not judging books by their cover. The soft illustrations have a gentleness that underlines the spring and autumn ages of those in the story. It is a lovely well illustrated story that will have many great uses in the classroom where age, the passing of time and infirmity are under discussion.
Fran Knight

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