Small Things

Publisher: Allen & Unwin

The protagonist of the story is a young ordinary boy in an ordinary world. He is, however, full of worries and dread. He is bullied at school and is upset about his falling grades. These worries eat away at him, making him feel entirely alone in the world. Yet with some help from his older sister, his parents and a new friend at school, he comes to learn that everyone is worried about something and that family and friends can help put things in to perspective.

This brilliant book manages to deal with bullying, fear of being different, frustration at underachieving, and the fact that while some things may appear small from the outside, they can feel unconquerable to those experiencing them. The fact that it achieves this without a single line of text or dash of colour is amazing. Tregonning's evocative and beautiful black-and-white illustrations are more than enough to pull off this perfect tale of childhood anxiety.

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