See You When I See You by Rose Lagercrantz and Eva Eriksson
|See You When I See You by Rose Lagercrantz and Eva Eriksson|
|Category: Emerging Readers|
|Reviewer: Ruth Ng|
|Summary: Brilliantly done for emerging readers, this is both funny and moving, with some wonderful illustrations.|
|Buy? yes||Borrow? yes|
|Pages: 152||Date: June 2017|
|Publisher: Gecko Press|
|External links: Author's website|
When Dani goes on a school trip to the zoo, all does not go as planned and Dani gets lost. However, in losing everyone else, she stumbles into an old friend, Ella! Reunited with her best friend, the two girls should be happy, but things don't seem to be entirely right with Ella. Is there anything that Dani can do to help?
Since first reading My Happy Life, the first story about Dani, my daughter has returned repeatedly to re-read the book, enjoying the story about Dani and Ella's friendship and also the wonderful artwork. When she saw this new episode in Dani's life she pounced on it to read and even though she's much older now she again very much enjoyed it. Written with short chapters, it's an accessible book to come to as a young reader heading towards longer chapter books. The text itself is written in a very immediate, almost abrupt at times, style that somehow reflects the lively, literal and direct nature that many children have.
As in the first story, there's a mixture of both humorous moments, and rather sad and upsetting moments. Dani's father is, in this story, hoping to invite a woman he has met over for Dani, but Dani remains aloof and distant, refusing to acknowledge the situation. I found myself irritated with Dani's father several times, but his lack of empathy and understanding do, of course, make for a good story. There are also difficulties at school with some of the children, and of course she still misses her best friend Ella. Even when they accidentally meet up with each other, things are not okay and Ella seems fidgety and upset. Some of the story felt quite unsettling to read, even as a grown up I felt sad, and awkward, for Dani. She seems like a very real little girl, and so the things that happen to her hit home as you read about them.
There are illustrations throughout the book, with sweetly drawn children and funny animals. My daughter commented particularly on the art, saying how lifelike everyone seemed. There's lots of movement and activity in the pictures, and humour too. I personally laughed at the picture of the children on the coach to the zoo, with one of them handing out sick bags to everyone!
This is a lovely transition story, moving gently away from colourful, full-page pictures to these lovely black and white illustrations. The style is very easy to read, extremely engaging and moving. Whilst it deals with issues relating to one parent families, bullying and long-distance friendships it does so fluidly, so that you don't really notice the subjects, but just understand the experiences that Dani is going through. Although I think boys could (and should!) read stories like this, it does particularly speak to young girls, and is a really well written, beautifully illustrated book.
Further reading suggestion: You might like to start with the first book in the series about Dani, My Happy Life by Rose Lagercrantz and Eva Eriksson.
You can read more book reviews or buy See You When I See You by Rose Lagercrantz and Eva Eriksson at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy See You When I See You by Rose Lagercrantz and Eva Eriksson at Amazon.com.
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