Tom Percival is a talented author and illustrator who explores emotions brilliantly within his picture books. As a mummy and teacher I highly recommend you find these books, if you haven’t already, or perhaps share them with libraries and learning settings as many readers will benefit from these reads. Published by Bloomsbury and complete with thoughtful, inclusive characters these books are a great resource for exploring children’s emotional and mental well being .
Meesha Makes Friends by Tom Percival
Before the story begins Tom Percival begins with a lovely warm note for his readers. He gently explains that making friends can look really easy when it can sometimes feel rather tricky. He reiterates, just like many of his stories do, that talking to others about how you feel is a great thing.
With many children due to begin and return to school life, books like this one will be a happy addition to many a bookshelf.
Meesha observes from afar lovely friendships and wishes she could have that too. When she does attempt to make friends the right words don’t quite come out.
She has an idea of making her own friends, all out of crafty bits, something she really enjoys doing. She gains so much happiness out of making her own group of friends.
But Meesha attending a party changes everything. As reluctant as she is to go she’s rather happy by the end, I wonder why that is?
As ever Tom Percival has written a great story which warmly shares the ups and down of making friends. Readers may well see themselves or others they know in Meesha. The book encourages so much discussion from exploring friend making to appreciating that we are unique and react to things differently. Readers with autism may find that Meesha shares similarities, for example in the way she finds the party a little chaotic and noisy.
This is a fantastic book with illustrations effectively representing Meesha’s emotions throughout.
Perfectly Norman by Tom Percival.
Perfectly Norman is a fantastic, diverse book with a great message for children. The story is centered around Norman who one day grows wings. He is amazed and delighted at his new wings but then it suddenly dawns on him that he is now “different” and worries how everyone would react. He feels the best thing to do would be to disguise them but he soon realises in doing this he becomes very sad.
Enough is enough and Norman realises that actually he should celebrate his wings and embrace what he has. He is a lot happier in doing so and finds that there are other children who also share his new feature.
My girls and I adore this book. It’s the first book we had read by Tom Percival and we think Norman is great for being true to himself and having the courage to celebrate his wings.
Ruby’s Worry by Tom Percival
From time to time we can all have worries, young and older and this picture book explores worries in a child friendly and engaging way.
Ruby is a happy young girl but one day she has a worry. The worry she starts off with is quite small but it follows her around everywhere and soon it becomes rather large.
Ruby attempts to remain positive while this worry is around but the problem is it starts to stop her from doing the things she loves. Nobody else realises that she has a worry and things don’t change until she meets a young boy at the park.
Ruby’s chance encounter with someone who looks rather sad, not too dissimilar to her, makes her realise a great many things but ultimately that we can all have worries. How can we overcome these worries? Well Ruby soon discovers that discussing how we feel with someone can really help.
Ruby’s Worry is sure to be a read that encourages lots of discussion with young readers and would be a great pick to have in a learning setting. It can be so hard to talk about something that is worrying you but this book brilliant explores how sharing your thoughts with something can bring bright colours and happiness back in your life.
Ravi’s Roar by Tom Percival
Ravi’s Roar so brilliantly explores the emotion of anger and in this case how it can change a little person into a rather loud, growling like tiger.
Ravi is the youngest and smallest in his family and normally it isn’t an issue and almost works in the little boys favour but, one day a visit to the park makes him think otherwise.
Whilst at the park Ravi is unable to mirror what his siblings are doing. He wants to have fun like them but it seems he is too little for the monkey bars, the gaps between the logs are too wide and then when he misses out on ice cream well something happens.
Ravi sees red, he changes into a tiger and his emotions are represented through his loud, shouty exterior. At first it seems fun as everyone begins to listen to him but gradually Ravi is left feeling empty. Is this the best way to be when things get too much?
Tom Percival does a wonderful job at representing how Ravi feels both through the text of the story and through his brilliant illustrations. Ravi realises that there are better ways of dealing with anger and in turn he apologies to those who need to hear a sorry. Another great book that would be such a great addition to all libraries.
Three super books that as well as being such beneficial reads are equally fun and enjoyable to read.
Disclaimer: I received these books from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All words and opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links.