# Sunday Morning for Kids is a variation on the meme started by Rae Longest at Powerful Women Readers.
Both books I read and would like to present today are on the topic of friendship. In my opinion, they are most suitable for older children due to the issues they deal with.
A warm friendship
Ellen DeLange is becoming one of my favourite authors. I already blogged about her books ‘The boy and the egg’ and ‘When I look up’, both of which dealt with the power of imagination, love and acceptance.
In ‘A warm friendship’ we meet cute and curious Squirrel that finds a lonely Snowman who’s shaking and shivering in the cold. She comes up with a plan to help him. Not only does she bring him a woolen scarf, but she also encourages other animals to stop by and bring a scarf or a blanket to wrap around and warm the poor thing up. They become great friends, until the warm spring sun melts the snowman, and the squirrel is sad to see that all that is left is a colourful pile of scarves. Wise Owl reminds Squirrel that she can see Snowman in every flower and leaf, as well as other animals’ hearts who also loved her little friend.
Sometimes we make friends for a brief time and then move on, and we have to learn to be kind to each other, even if we are in a temporary situation. There are many different ways of explaining this story, which is essentially about caring for each other while we are together and sometimes having to let it go, without forgetting your friend. You can also talk about the seasons and nature, or if your child older and is mature enough, you can also touch upon loss, grieving, and cherishing our memories of the loved ones who are not with us any more.
The illustrations by Jacqueline Molnar are adorable, and are probably the feature of the book I liked the best.
Bruno has one hundred friends
Bruno is on his way to spend time with his friends when he finds a curious object- a phone. Bruno quickly understands that the phone lets him do lots of new things and have experiences he has never had, but above all, it allows him to have many more friends. In fact, when his old friends, Renzo and Rico, ask him what this object is for, he doesn’t hesitate: ‘It’s for making lots of friends all over the world’. Unfortunately, what happens next is a bit sad, because Bruno gets so absorbed in what is going on online, that he forgets to pay any attention to Renzo and Rico, who are trying very hard to involve him in ‘real life’ activities. Until one day the phone breaks and Bruno loses his virtual friends only to discover that Renzo and Rico are still there for him and will always be.
I am in two minds about this one. On one hand, it is important to make children think about the importance of real-life friendships and ‘non-digital life’. Balance is essential, playing, running, climbing trees, cycling, discovering the world with your senses, chatting to real people you can look into eyes or give a hug is invaluable. On the other hand, there are benefits to using technology, not least of which is various online communities for people with similar interests, saying nothing of keeping in touch with real friends who happen to be far away. Again, it is up to the parent/ caregiver to talk with a child and discuss the implications and consequences of abandoning your older friends, when you could share your new discoveries and let your friends know how these enrich your life.
The artwork is beautiful and sweet, with warm colours, and endearing pictures of the three bear friends.
Thank you to NetGalley and Clavis for these ARCs provided in exchange for an honest opinion.