This author/illustrator has worked with 8- to 10-year-old children from an International school in Rome to create a work of significance. It opens, ‘How interesting! The word Peace is beautiful in all languages.’ Speech bubbles proclaim ten versions of the word, before children respond to the question, ‘What does Peace smell like?’
‘Wind that comes in your nose when you are sleeping,’ ‘Pizza with onions and sausage that just came out of the oven.’ What does Peace look like? ‘Like a cloud high up in the sky that just happens to be there giving happiness to everybody, white and fluffy PEACE.’ ‘Like your mum who kisses you and hugs you…’ The ideas develop, each double spread devoted to one of the five senses, with delightfully varied and perceptive similes given by the children, whose names and ages are listed on each page. The questioning format of the book lends itself to personalisation by readers of all ages, and its use in homes and schools will provide much creative discussion.
The final spread states: ‘Just imagine what we could build with peace. I can’t draw it all here. A book is too small for that.’ The book closes with a list of Peace written in 190 languages, from the French Paix and Scandinavian Fred, to Tongan Melino and Urdu Aman. The gouache illustrations have much appeal, featuring children and animals in familiar situations, enhancing the feel of the whole book.