Author: Pilar López Ávila
Illustrator: Mar Azabal
Cover: Hard cover
Dimensions: 21 x 26 cm
Ayobami dreams of going to school. But to reach the schoolhouse, she has to take a dangerous path: the one that leads through the jungle.
This is a tale about the importance of education, the difficulties that many children have to overcome to go to school, and the perseverance and enthusiasm of those who want to learn.
Mar Azabal is a graduate in Geography, specialising in Administration and archive conservation. Her real dream was to create stories through drawing and illustration. She currently lives in Toledo, Spain, and spends her time teaching illustration courses for children, creating stories and enjoying raising her little child.
Her web: marad-ilustracion.papiroo.com
“Sandwiched between endpapers of yellow-lined paper showing the upper- and lowercase cursive alphabet, this quiet story shouts the pricelessness of literacy.(…) A marvelous tale of one girl’s passion for reading, writing, and learning.”
-Kirkus Starred Review
“(…) Younger children will likely relate to and enjoy Ayobami’s perseverance to attend class. The framework of “naming” animals will also likely appeal to early elementary school–aged children, particularly as they themselves are learning about—and how to write the names of—various animals (…) A solid purchase for elementary school libraries.”
-School Library Journal
“With the feel of an Aesop’s fable, this story is both empowering and reflective of the joy school can bring to children whose lives have been disrupted by war. Beautiful illustrations in graphite, watercolor, and colored pencil lend an ethereal, magical quality to this unnamed place, where dangerous creatures have endearing faces, and letters of the alphabet flutter around Ayobami like protective stardust.”
“…The story highlights the natural desire children have to learn things. In a way it also demonstrates that humans and animals can live in harmony, that they can take care of the needs of one another.
Thus we see both the memory of war and the hope of peace in this delightful book.”
“This picture book is truly stunning. It has gorgeous illustrations with a magical story about a girl who gets lost on her way to school, and manages to negotiate her way past the jungle creatures who find her, by offering to bring back their names to them. It’s a lovely story and like many picture books, the magic is in the beauty of the illustrations, and the subtle messages underlying the story about bravery and the value of education are things every parent can get behind, even while children enjoy the story at face value”.