A month ago, I had the privilege of meeting prolific Indian author, Anushka Ravishankar, when I was invited to be one of the speakers for the International seminar and exhibition in Mumbai, India. I mentioned to her that I found her book Elephants Never Forget in our library here in Singapore and that I’d be sure to include it as part of our Poetry-Filled Yuletide Cheer theme this November and December.
At the very core of this picture book is an elephant who felt that he did not belong anywhere – a sudden storm has left the baby elephant all alone, away from his family, away from his herd. He found himself in the midst of the water buffaloes:
The buffaloes looked so calm, so serene. The water was lovely, cool and green.
who gave him a sense of belonging, a space away from fear – a family. As he grew up, he “helped them take a shower bath” and “found them leaves when the grass was dry.” Despite the fact that
His ears were too large, His nose was too long, His shape was quite odd, And his color all wrong
this elephant found a new set of brothers and sisters – who loved him the way he was. This book is perfect for very young children who would, no doubt, enjoy the alliterative text and rhythm of the words. It is also great for children who are just starting out in school and may feel a tad different from the others, and finding home among other strange creatures such as themselves. While the illustrations did not appeal to me that much, I thought that it showed a nice layout of the text alongside the drawings.
PictureBook Challenge Update: 131 (120)
PoC Reading Challenge Update: 57 (25)
South Asian Challenge Update: 7 of 7
Elephants Never Forget by Anushka Ravishankar and illustrations by Christiane Pieper. Houghton Mifflin Company Boston, 2008. Book borrowed from the NIE Library. Book photos were taken by me.
I love the heart of this story… the acceptance and celebration of differences, the importance of being accepted, the warmth of belonging!
Hi Joanna! That’s true. The book has that depth to it. 🙂 Anushka is a master at storytelling.
We have a fascination with elephants in this house, so this book will be a hit if only for the choice of animal. 🙂 The bonus is the beautiful theme it conveys.
There are elephants all around Singapore now (at least in most of the malls and in the city) because of the Holiday Season – I think it’s meant to be symbolic of something or other. I’m sure you’d love it.
It is always so cool to meet the authors!
Couldn’t agree more.
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