Review Blog

Jun 06 2017

Nanna's button tin by Dianne Wolfer

cover image

Ill. by Heather Potter. Walker Books Australia, 2017. ISBN 9781922077677
(Age: 4+) Recommended. Nanna's button tin is a delightful story that highlights the special relationship between a nanna and her granddaughter. This little girl is on a mission, determined to find the perfect button to replace her teddy's lost eye. As they open the tin and spread the colourful buttons across the carpet, Nanna shares some special stories. Together they search and sort, there's the button from the newborn matinee jacket, the three bears' buttons added to a birthday jumper, even the angel buttons sewn on the corners of a hospital blanket. Buttons of all shapes, sizes and colours are separated and set aside, until the perfect little brown button is discovered.
Heather Potter's gorgeous pastel pencil-and-wash drawings add a richness and warmth to the story. Her detailed scenes are fun to explore; she shows Nanna and Pop's comfy house that is perfect for the grandchildren to visit; there is a busy birthday party with cheerful costumed children and a poignant hospital visit where teddy first appears. In the close-up scenes, she beautifully portrays the range of emotions on the young girl's and her Nanna's face. From the hand sewn letters of the title, to the button necklaces shown on the endpapers, this is a celebration of buttons and stitching.
Told from the young girl's point of view in uncomplicated expressive language, this story celebrates the simple things a family can do to build togetherness. Dianne Wolfer's narrative is a delight to read aloud to a kindergarten class or to share as a family.
Rhyllis Bignell

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