The Heart and the Bottle by Oliver JeffersA picture book about grief. A little girl likes to read with her grandfather as he sits in his rocking chair, and then one day she faces an empty chair. Yes, its that subtle, the chair is just empty, no explanation, really. Her grandpa is gone, and since she feels like she cant risk too much strain on her heart again, the girl grows up solitary, putting her heart in a bottle which she wears tied to a string around her neck. This doesnt make her life easier finally, as one might imagine. One day she meets a young girl, though, who helps her remove that heart from the bottle.
So this is a metaphor or analogy for the grieving life, and a lovely simple and sweet one. Will kids get it? Oh, I think so, with some talk with adults (which is in a way one of the very things the book is about, reading and talking together with kids), to help them make sense of the unspeakable things we all face from time to time. And I like the reciprocity of support suggested here: Grandpas help kids, kids help adults. We can be good for each other. I love the artwork of Oliver Jeffers, with lots of contemplative space and lovely watercolors and slightly elongated depictions of people.
The Heart and the Bottle
Mar 04, ISBN years. From 1 New York Times bestseller Oliver Jeffers, comes a poignant and beautiful story about finding joy after loss. There is a wonder and magic to childhood. They encourage us to see things in the stars, to find joy in colors and laughter as we play. But what happens when that special someone who encourages such wonder and magic is no longer around? We can hide, we can place our heart in a bottle and grow up.
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You have to write up, not down. And nowhere is there more heartening an antidote than in The Heart and the Bottle public library by the inimitable Oliver Jeffers. With exquisite subtlety and economy of words, Jeffers — whose mastery of the interplay between darkness and light extends as much to the paintbrush as it does to the psyche — silently uncorks the outpour of hollowing emotions engendered by loss. But if grief is so disorienting and crushing an emotion for adults , how are unprepared little hearts expected to handle its weight? Suddenly, she is reminded of all she lost when she locked away loss. So she sets out to liberate her heart from its glassy prison — but the bottle has been fortified by years of self-protection. But there, it occurred to someone smaller and still curious about the world that she might know a way.