On The Wings Of A Butterfly
Author: Belinda Messer
Illustrator: Jessica Smith
Publisher: Belinda Messer Creative
How this book might help: A colourful and heart-warming approach to tackling the loss of a loved one, with practical suggestions for coping with loss.
On The Wings of a Butterfly discusses feelings that a child may encounter when a loved one passes away, and normalises them. The child is encouraged to remember the deceased through memories and special moments, and to think of them living on in the world around us – maybe on the wings of a butterfly, or in the clouds above. The book deals briefly with stillbirth, and explains that a stillborn baby spends its life inside a tummy, rather than out in the world, and that the baby’s special moments are spent there instead. At the end of the story, the child is encouraged to go forward and make their own memories that will form part of their life journey, because their loved one would not want them to be sad. Finally, there is space for the child to draw and write about their loved one inside the book, making this a special keepsake and permanent point of reference for the child, as they continue on their grieving journey.
Reviewed by: Rebecca Seymour
Things we liked about this book: This story addresses a child personally, and is written in a comforting tone. The illustrations are warm and bright, and you can tell that the author is sending this message from a personal perspective, which reinforces the messages given.
Worth Noting: The overall message of this book is that a loved one does not simply disappear when they die, and that they can be seen in the beauty of the world around us. This is a lovely message, but not all parents and carers wish to choose this angle, and some may prefer a different approach. This book is not available on Amazon. It is available here
Age Range: 3+