Thursday, February 13, 2014

The Healing Power of Friendship

"Writing a book of poetry is like dropping a rose petal down the Grand Canyon and waiting for the echo."
                                                                    - Don Marquis

Title: Celia
Author:  Christelle Vallat
Illustrator:  Stéphanie Augusseau
Ages:  4-8

Celia is an old woman who has a very special gift.  She listens to people's problems and worries and in exchange gives them her advice every Sunday.  The burdened people line up and tell her their woes in exchange for a seed.  Why would Celia ask for a seed?  Well on Monday morning she puts the seeds in a wheelbarrow and heads into town.  She takes those seeds and scatters them into the sky, magically causing big colourful balloons to appear.  She wings some seeds into the local bakery and enchants the cupcakes and cakes with beautiful, colourful frosting.  Heading to the countryside those windblown seeds become apple trees and turn into shining stars at night.

Oddly enough she finds a lonesome seed that someone has lost.  It belongs to a little boy named Julian and she seeks him out and takes him home and helps him plant his seed in a flower pot.  Together they water, nurture, and patiently watch the seed grow into a pretty flower.  This act of kindness makes both she and Julian very happy and the anxiety and worry that he once carried around dissipates as they bond together as friends.

The art is amazing and the character of Celia perfect.  The black and white world that surrounds them  bursts with colour as the people's problems, once shared, are transformed by Celcia into bold, splashes of colour that give life, beauty and vitality to their once mundane and colourless world.  The story is uplifting and shows the value of kindness and friendship.

About the author:

Christelle Vallat has written many books while working in her dream job - teacher! One of her biggest satisfactions comes from inspiring her young students. She loves spending hours in libraries and bookstores, knee-deep in books.  Sh lives in Saint-Jean-en-Royans, France.

About the illustrator:

Stéphanie Augusseau's love for art history inspired her to study graphic design and visual communications at LISAA in Paris.  She primarily works with traditional techniques, such as acrylic, gouache, watercolour, and ink.  She lives with her family in Toulon, France.

                                   Book Review Rating:   9 ( Close to perfection!)

Read on and read always!  Have an excellent day everyone!
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