Wednesday 28 August 2019

Out Today: "Old Man of the Sea" by Stella Elia and Weberson Santiago (Lantana Publishing)

We see an awful lot of books that nod and acknowledge the special place that grandparents have in their grandchildren's lives, but in "Old Man of the Sea" by Stella Elia and Weberson Santiago, there are layers and layers of story tucked in between the brilliantly observed cross-generational relationship described here.

At first, Grandpa is a bit of a closed book to the little boy in the story, but as they begin to spend more time together, Grandpa begins to tell stories - real life stories of his exploits as a sailor, and his love of the sea.

The two form a close bond over these stories, for a child the amazing adventurous exploits of their elders aren't always something that it's easy for them to imagine, but in coaxing those stories out of their grandparents, they learn so much about them - and perhaps a little bit about themselves too.

Certainly in this story the boy begins to imagine all the amazing places Grandpa has visited with all the familiarity of a favourite person, as his elder relates tales of falling in love with Europe, Asia, Australasia and the Americas, but each time - except for the last time - returning to his first love, the ocean.

Stella and Weberson work beautifully together on a book that is tinged with summery hues, and just draws you right in.

Such beautiful stuff, pretty educational for little ones too and perfect to share with your own grandparents if you're staying with them over the summer.

Sum this book up in a sentence: "A truly brilliant cross-generational deep sea dive into the relationship between grandparent and grandchild, and all the glorious places there are to visit in our amazing world where stories help to draw both characters together in a heart-melting way."

"Old Man of the Sea" By Stella Elia and Weberson Santiago is out today, published by Lantana Publishing (kindly supplied for review).