Tessa and Zachary have a cruisy, comfy, clean and calm machine. They use it to ride to school each day. It is climate-controlled, quiet and smooth. When it’s hot, they put on the aircon, when it’s cold, they put on the heat.
It’s comfort personified. No effort required. A lot like modern life in the West, actually, most especially for our kids, who both enjoy and live snugly in the concept of Comfort.
As humans, we strive for Comfort in life. But in our eternal quest to achieve it, we quickly miss out on Life.
We miss out on the huffpuffing strain of climbing mountains, the pulse-pushing agony of running marathons, the cold-bearing discomfort of finding the perfect snowflake or the heat-crushing agony of making it across a sizzling beach to the ocean.
And author Meg McKinlay totally gets this. She pushes her characters out of their machine and out of their comfort zone and into the real world where Things reside. Strange things. Challenging things. Breathtakingly beautiful things.
And her characters respond most excellently.
I totally appreciate Meg’s voice in this book – it’s gorgeously-crafted and a delight to read. Illustrations by Kyle Hughes-Odgers are strikingly different and as enticing as chocolate. With a folksy/block-print feel and stunning knack for pattern, Kyle uses acrylic paint and stain on wood panels which lend an authentic, earthy, ecological feel to this truly beautiful book.
A must-own – not only for its beauty, but for its subtle and important messaging.
Ten Tiny Things is published by Fremantle Press