Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Greta and the Giants: Inspired by Greta Thunberg's stand to save the world by Zoe Tucker illustrated by Zoe Persico

Greta and the Giants: Inspired by Greta Thunberg's stand to save the world by Zoe Tucker illustrated by Zoe Persico
Published December 2019 Quarto UK

This inspiring picture book retells the story of Nobel Peace Prize nominee Greta Thunberg - the Swedish teenager who has led a global movement to raise awareness about the world's climate crisis - using allegory to make this important topic accessible to young children.
Greta is a little girl who lives in a beautiful forest threatened by Giants. When the Giants first came to the forest, they chopped down trees to make houses. Then they chopped down more trees and made even bigger homes. The houses grew into towns and the towns grew into cities, until now there is hardly any forest left. Greta knows she has to help the animals who live in the forest, but how? Luckily, Greta has an idea... A section at the back explains that, in reality, the fight against the 'giants' isn't over and explains how you can help Greta in her fight.

When I started reading this I was surprised, as I expected it to be a picture book depicting the life of Greta Thunberg.  I have read a number of books about Greta recently for middle grade and older readers, so I thought a picture book would be a great addition to this collection.

That is not what this picture book is though.  As the blurb states (which I obviously didn't read properly), this is an allegory (a story, poem, or picture that can be interpreted to reveal a hidden meaning, typically a moral or political one.).  Once I got my head around the fact that this wasn't a narrative non fiction title about Greta, I was most impressed.  It's the perfect starting point to talk about this amazing young activist with young readers.

Greta and the Giants is a story about a girl standing up to the giants that come into her forest and start chopping down the trees, and destroying the habitats of all who live there.  This is a young children's picture book, and as such it has a positive and happy ending...not necessary a reflection on what is happening in the real world, but for this age group, a satisfying conclusion.  It emphasises the importance of speaking up, and how one voice can become many.

There are notes in the back of the book about the real life Greta, as well as notes on what we can do to help battle climate change.

I think Greta's words, "No one is too small to make a difference" will inspire a younger generation to use their voice and start to make a difference.

~ Thanks to NetGalley for the reading copy

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