Title – Here We Are and What We’ll Build
Author – Oliver Jeffers
Type – Hardcover
Age group – 2 – 6 years
Here We Are and What We’ll Build by Oliver Jeffers
I’m reviewing these books together, because much like Oliver Jeffers’ Once There Was a Boy series, I believe these books belong to a similar continuity. Here We Are, published first, is the beginning of a conversation, where he takes his little one (or our little one) from the earth and space to the unique land above and curiouser life below. He talks of the inside of our body, and the outside, the differences we have and our very different lives and how kindness is above it all. He promises to answer questions because he’s sure the little one will have many. And herein lies the beauty of this book. It opens the door to so many of those questions! About life on our planet and how different it is and can be. How there are so many of us doing so many unique things, and yet, we’re all here using up whatever earth has for us. So shouldn’t we look after it?
While Here We Are was about what is in and around us, What We’ll Build is about what we could do and what could be. There is a darker note to this book, as it gently touches up on wars, the destruction of the planet, and survival.
But it’s all so beautifully Jeffers, that the darkness is more hope, and bright and colours, and just so much love.
Both his books have this warm thread of togetherness, of telling the child, “I’m right here with you.” They’re the perfect books to start a conversation about the environment and resources, along with how important empathy and kindness are.
As you can tell, I’m probably as big a fan as my child. I’ve introduced these books at 4.5 years and I can imagine taking him through them again and again over the next year, going deeper into the open-ended universe on each page. I hope you enjoy these, as much as we are!
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