For all the children of the world- young and old.
We all grow up in an environment filled with people who are different from us. This story is about a little girl who is curious about those differences and the implications of those differences. But, what she ends up discovering is that we are all more similar than we realize, especially since all follow the same Golden Rule.
I just finished the story. It makes me want to laugh and dance and proclaim my happiness from the top of the building. But, that might piss the neighbours off and so, I’ll try to transfer all of that happiness into this review.
This was such a heart-warming story. In the world right now, politics has become steamier than the climate, tempers have shortened to the point of non-existence and egos have grown to the size of the former Soviet Union. I wish that the situation, which seems to be on the tip of boiling over, was bringing us together. But, instead, people are exploiting our differences- of race, of religion, of gender, of sexuality- to drive us apart; hate crimes are on the rise not in one particular country, but all over the world.
So, in a time where every turn of the newspaper gives you something new to hate about the world, reading this short story where a little girl is looking at religion objectively, with an open mind and with tolerance brings a smile to my face that should last at least the next 12 hours.
The Golden Rule, written by Jessica Marie Baumgartmer has simple words, short sentences and repetitive syntax which kids will delight in. The illustrations by Laura Winship-Fanaei are simple watercolours. Though her human form drawings are kind of misshapen, that’s only on three pages; the rest of her work is really noteworthy for their simplistic beauty. They’ll catch your attention not only because of the eye-pleasing pastel colouring, but also because they are so apt for the written words. They go together really well, especially if you’re going to be reading to the child.
BOTTOMLINE: Have you ever had that moment when you’re reading, there’s a song playing in the background and suddenly, in a serendipitous moment, sound and word align together so well, sync with your imagination so perfectly that you wonder if the song was written for the story or was the story written for the song? The answer is that neither was made for the other; but, sometimes, such perfect matches happen. The illustrations with the writing in this book is one of those perfect matches; and it comes with a beautiful, relevant message too. So, my wholehearted recommendation is to give it a read- you, your baby, your friends, your family, your partner and everybody else in the world.