Title: My Act Of Heart
Authors: Anjali G Sharma and Deepika Ahuja
Age group: 8-13 years
I am posting this review on behalf of my daughter Shranya.
I was really overjoyed to receive this book the day it came! It’s been forever and a day since I got a new book. This is my first book signed by authors Anjali G Sharma aunty and Deepika Ahuja aunty.
Whenever I talk to my mom about getting me a new book, she always coolly brushes the topic off within 10-15 secs until the day this book was on my table, when I reached home from school. I was tired, but the second I caught a glimpse of the book grinning to itself waiting to be picked up by a person to read it. I threw my bag to the right, my bag to the left and grabbed the book! I was pleased as a punch to finally have a new book after all.
When I finished reading it, the words of the book hovered around my head at night as I kept thinking about it. It was truly a heart touching book, with meaning hidden deep inside it. Now this is one of my favorite books on my bookshelf.
A person with a true compassionate heart can understand the meaning behind these stories. The book not only consists of mere words, but magical ones in the form of 29 true stories, written by children from across the world like India, Singapore, Jordan, Pakistan, Germany, USA and Australia. Compassion – we may have heard this word in one of its many forms like kindhearted, warm hearted, tender, humanitarian. It is not restricted to any particular age group, gender or country.
One the many stories that clicked with me was – “The girl in the mirror”. This is a story about girl – Ananya. She had acne and didn’t consider herself beautiful. She was conscious about her appearance, even while going to school and meeting her friends and didn’t like looking at herself in the mirror. One day she felt the need to address the issue and thought to fight back. She stood up for herself and decided to end the feeling of being self-conscious. She looked at herself in the mirror and said to herself – “I am beautiful” and she started saying this to herself daily. This gave her inner strength and finally she was able to come out of the shell of being self-conscious.
After reading the book, I understood that, “Compassion is a practice when you show someone care or love they deserve.”
My key takeaways from the book are:
- I got to know about a wonderful emotion – Compassion.
- I understood not to take anything or anyone for granted.
- Even our slightest gesture towards empathy counts, even if it seems to be like a drop in the enormous ocean.
- Just like we say a smile is contagious, I can now relate that to the phrase that compassion too, is contagious.
- At the end of each chapter, this book introduces a concept called “Compassion with Practice”. Meaning, try to incorporate compassion within you, by doing simple exercises mentioned in this book. You can start with some easy exercises like smiling at an unknown person, even though it may seem weird at the beginning.
Things that worked for me:
- Sympathy, tender-heartedness, caring, benevolence: I knew about these words earlier too, but when I got to read stories implementing these emotions, that’s when I got to know the power of compassion and how each individual – no matter how big or small, can do their bit to make the world a better place to live and let live.
- Compassion is an emotion; this book offers all stories in an easy language which as a kid I am able to understand and relate.
- Eye-catchy yet simple illustrations
- There is a dedicated section called Our Stars of Compassion giving a shout-out to all little heroes and sheroes whose stories are there in book for us to imbibe. It also mentions about illustrators who contributed towards wonderful illustrations.
I would highly recommend the book and its heartwarming stories to not just kids of my age, but certainly to elders as well. I don’t want to be preachy, but that’s the need of hour 😊
Thanks Anjali and Deepika aunty for composing a wonderful book to be kept life-long with us.
[Disclaimer: This book was a review copy organised via kids book café]
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