The Nature of Stammering 09/08/22
My Beautiful Voice
Publisher: Frances Lincoln
When a child who never speaks gets a new teacher, Miss Flotsam, she is blown away by her colourful personality, her vivacious stories and her enthusiasm for poetry. Gently, Miss Flotsam encourages the silent girl to write her own poem as part of a school poetry project which will lead to a performance – but will the little girl muster the courage to read her poem aloud?
Allison Colpoys’ stunning illustrations explode in a riot of colour, perfectly depicting the kind and expansive Miss Flotsam described by Coelho: the kind of teacher everyone would love to have. This visual treat of a book is filled with Coelho’s love for words and the magic of stories and rhyme, all of which have the power to transport us to other places – and the power to give us confidence, if we believe in our own voice.
It's never clear whether the little girl is just very shy or perhaps has selective mutism, but it’s clear that she hasn’t said much for quite a while, and her confidence in speaking is very low. Either way, this is a gentle story that pays homage to the people that sometimes come into our lives to guide us through difficult times, and the power of a fantastic teacher.