Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Rikis - a bookwrap

Many of us have been blessed to never have grown up in a country where a war ravages everything we know.  We have lived in peace and harmony able to carry on with our lives and focus on the good things around us.  The book today gives us a glimpse into a little girl's life where war defines part of her life and how she and her family survive the terror and separation ...


Authored by Aleksandra Kusurovic

Illustrated by Natalia

Unwrapping some illustrations for you to enjoy...

Unwrapping "The Book"...

Sasha has always loved budgies and has asked many times to own one since she is an only child and would love their company.  Her parents always refuse her request.  

One summer while she is away at her Grandmother's she buys a budgie and calls him Riki.   She tucks him inside a box and puts a thin cloth over him as she returns home.  Her father meets her at the bus station and inquires about the content of the box. Fearing her father may be displeased she fibbs and tells him it contains raspberries from Grandmother's visit.   Feeling guilty Sasha fesses up, and to her pure delight her Dad, who had owned canaries as a child, was very welcoming to the new member of their family.

Years pass and everyone in the family adores Riki.  Then one day, because birds don't live as long as humans, Riki passes away.  Filled with sorrow and grief Sasha buries her bird friend in the local neighbourhood park and puts flowers on his grave.  Seeing how sad and downhearted his daughter is at her loss, Dad takes her to a local breeder of budgies and there she acquired Riki (2).  

Time marches on and Sasha goes off to university. While there war breaks out  and she her mom must leave and seek refuge with Grandmother, leaving dad and Riki back in war-torn Sarajevo.  Dad struggles to survive with the war raging all around him.  Sasha sends him food packages and always includes seed for her beloved Riki, missing them both desperately.

Will the family be separated for ever?  Will her dad and Riki be safe and spared?  Can both be protected and survive so they can all be reunited and the circle of love continue post wartime?  So many questions... is a happy ending possible?

The illustrations are colourful and vibrant.  The message of the book, although only mentioning war, does not go into great detail about it. It opens up a channel to discuss how war affects those involved in it and gives an opportunity to talk about faith, hope and the happiness of when the war finally subsides. 

About the author...

Aleksandra Kuburovic was born and grew up in Sarajevo, capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina, one of the republics of former Yugoslavia. When the war started in her country, she immigrated to Canada. Presently, Aleksandra lives in Toronto with her son and husband.

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