The Boy in the Big Blue Glasses by Susanne Gervay and Marjorie Crosby-Fairall.
I was fortunate to see this story at various stages of the publication process, so, you can imagine my excitement when I received the printed copy on my doorstep.
Susanne has created an emotionally charged story that will resonate with many children and adults. For those whose struggle to see the world around them clearly glasses offer the gift of sight. As a longtime member of the four-eyes club, this story brought back memories of having to adjust to my new look while to still trying to be me.
Sam doesn't want glasses. They hurt the backs of his ears and no-one seems to recognise him. Sam just wants to be Sam, a masked superhero, son and friend of George.
Despite Sam's family telling him how handsome he is, nothing can lift his despair.
Miss May even tries to make Sam feel at ease by calling him to the front of the class. 'What's different about Sam? She asks. But Sam doesn't feel different, and this just makes his stomach hurt.
George, Sam's best friend, is the only one who doesn't treat Sam differently. George knows he can always rely on superhero Sam to save him from a hungry shark at playtime.
No-one else is listening, so Sam takes matters into his own hands. He tries everything he can to lose his glasses. But they always find their way back to him.
An unexpected change in the class leaves Sam feeling not so super. In a desperate attempt to fit back in, Sam tries something drastic, leaving him seeing the world differently.
I'm a huge fan of Marjorie's illustrations, and I was delighted to hear she was the illustrator for this story. You can easily feel Sam's moods with each carefully delivered brush stroke. Her commitment to the detail in the characters and their surroundings is exceptional. The colours are warm and inviting to the eye.
This book will promote discussion about inclusion, anxiety, fear, miscommunication, identity, friendship, acceptance not only from those around us but also from inside us and of course, glasses.
Teacher notes are also available for The Boy in the Big Blue Glasses.
Be sure to visit our blog on 1 July when we chat with Susanne about her latest book and the history behind it.
Author: Susanne Gervay
Illustrator: Marjorie Crosby-Fairall
Publisher: EK Books