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A book for all our young travelers


“A Ball, a Book and the Butterflies – A Story about International Transition” by Anna Barratt and “our own” talented Sally McWilliam has hit the shelves at Books & Co. It’s a lovely book for international families and their young children about the joys and tricky moments of moving from country to country saying goodbye to friends and making new ones.

Here is what Ruth E. VanReken, co-author Third Culture Kids: Growing Up Among Worlds and co-founder Families in Global Transition has said about the book:

“A Ball, a Book and the Butterflies” is a great new tool for parents or educators to use with their children during times of global transition! The story explores how one child felt during his international move, and is accompanied by reflective pages to help adults in their discussions with children about what they are feeling (or have felt) when making similar moves. Such discussions are key so children can process the inevitable losses that come with transition so in time they can also be free to use the many gifts such a childhood also brings. Good job, Anna and Sally!”


Book of the Week – My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout

mynameislucybartonIt’s a story of emotions so familiar based on experiences most of us won’t recognize; a story of longing between a daughter and her estranged mother and a story of how stories can bring us together.

The circumstances that have kept mother and daughter apart are slow to reveal themselves, but after a while it becomes clear that Lucy (of My Name is Lucy Barton) has fled a past and a childhood most of us would rush to get away from. A childhood of poverty, of parents who knew no better than to raise their children in an abusive environment. The hardships they were accustomed to passed on to Lucy, her brother and her sister.

When Lucy, a struggling – and budding – author now living in New York City, is hospitalized, her mother arrives at her bedside. The lines of communication Lucy thought were forever gone, slowly return in the form of stories of the lives of people back home; who married, who divorced; who should have known better; who should have known their place and not hoped to better themselves.

Intertwined with this rekindling of a relationship is Lucy’s own story, her marriage, her struggle to come to terms with her past, her decision to leave it all behind and the question of who she is in this new world and whether she will ever really be anyone other than who she was back home and how, ultimately do you find peace in the past as well as in the future.

My Name is Lucy Barton is sparse and intense, much like Lucy’s life. You don’t really expect it to move you, until it does, and you find yourself deeply touched by Lucy’s story, her brother’s fate and how and why other people’s opinions can form who you are.

Poetry Tuesday

For this week’s Poetry Tuesday post we would like to share this lovely note from Roger Sutton, editor-in-chief of The Horn Book Magazine, a wonderful resource for books for children and young adults.

“I can’t think of a genre that scares more book reviewers than poetry (maybe sports books). Perhaps they are afraid that some eagle-eyed reader is going to find out the reviewer doesn’t know the difference between a spondee and a dactyl, but, really, this is making the task more difficult than it needs to be. Treat a poem like a picture book: read it, read it again, read it aloud, look at it. Where prose encourages linear reading from first word to last, poetry asks us to dawdle, stopping here and there, re-examining a previous line in the light of a later one, wondering why a line break—just like a picture book’s page turn—happens where it does. If a novel’s job is to make us curious about what happens next, a poem—more sculpture than movie—is always gently reminding us that there’s no rush. You and it have no place else to be soon. Pull up a chair.”rogersutton

Books make for beautiful displays