Sarah’s Shadow is aimed at emerging readers and looks at the desperate unhappiness that can follow a bullying incident. Sarah is laughed at for having a shadow that looks different from everyone else’s and that laughter cuts her to the core. She makes a forlorn wish – that her shadow is separated from her for good. But what does a shadow do without its creator? Will it not feel as lost and unhappy as Sarah?
Although Sarah is initially relieved that the cause of her teasing has gone, ultimately she begins to regret her hasty banishing and her worries start anew. Lesson learned, she finds her shadow and together and adopt a far more constructive approach to deal with her problems. Illustrations, so vital for emergent readers, have a clarity and detail which enhance the story beautifully.
Sadly, today’s news is typically full of stories concerning the rise in mental health issues affecting even the very young in our society. Anxiety is often considered to be a mild condition that a little toughening up would sort out in next to no time, however this is being reevaluated. Anxiety can have a crippling impact on a young person’s life leading to poor school attendance and isolation from friends and a social life.
Author Nick Jones handles his story well and provides a perceptive and enjoyable story about childhood worries. It would appeal to newly independent readers but also for parents to share and discuss with kids not quite at that stage yet.