An important, delightful and
inviting book about making choices and finding our own path of least
resistance, this is an inspiring work for all ages (and particularly suited to
4 – 8 year olds).
‘One day, for no particular
reason, nothing was going right. Absolutely, positively, nothing was going
right. So… I decided to go left.’
We are all exposed to the
burdens, fears, challenges and frustrations of life – none of us is immune.
This book empowers us to recognise when things aren’t going well, and to make
the choice to get up and pick ourselves a brand new road.
The words are engaging and
conversational with a warm, friendly and intimate feel. The illustrations give
us a sense of the emotional intensity of the narrative by initially using a
sombre and muted colour palette to create a potent atmosphere – lending a sense of gravitas and the unknown.
Together, the storyline and pictures work seamlessly to keep the reader turning
The illustrations are funny and delightful.
We range through a sense of gloomy colour and tone, to ultimately walk into a vibrant,
sunny world of warmth and light. The little critters along the way are simply
hilarious. In fact, the entire journey through the book is actually like moving
from a rainy, gloomy day into the friendly sunlight.
That is not to say that this is
a ‘let’s all dance naked in the wood with no worries’ type of story. It is
definitely not! However, it is profoundly anchored in the hope and optimism
that we all have as children and often lose somewhere along the way.
There’s the sense that this will
be one of those wonderful books in the vein of Dr Seuss’ ‘Oh, The Places
You’ll Go’ in terms of its capacity to transcend age limits and be
appropriate for all manner of situations. I can see it being gifted to teens
and young adults as they leave home for work/study/adventure, or to anyone who
is at a crossroads or making an important life decision. It’s definitely one
for all ages.
Title: When Things Aren’t Going Right, Go Left
Author: Marc Colagiovanni
Illustrator: Peter H Reynolds
Publisher: Scholastic $19.99
Publication Date: March 2023
For ages: 4 – 8
Type: Picture Book