The Silence Slips in by Alison Hughes
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Silence and noise are funny things. Many of us love one over the other.
In today's society it is natural for the average person to like some level of noise. Most of the world lives in human noisy places (like cities) or in naturally noise places (like the rainforest or a farm). In fact there was a study some years ago where a sound-proof room was made. A room where literally being in it you could hear your own heartbeat. Most people could not manage to stand more than 20-30 seconds in the room before freaking out and beginning to lose their mind. If you keep that in mind this becomes an odd book. However I absolutely understand what Alison Hughes is going for and adore it.
Hughes takes us on a journey of a little girl learning where silence can be found. In natural places, like at night while it's dark, after a party, following a storm or when snow gently floats to the ground. These are all very magical types of silence we encounter. Some not very often, and others, like at night in the dark we experience everyday. As a Canadian, who is looking out the window as I type to see snow falling to the ground, I love the page that Hughes has about the snow falling to the ground. One of the most silent moments in urban or rural areas is the morning that snow has covered the ground and is still gently falling. It's like the snow is making this quiet. This is a type of morning that I have trouble explaining as it's so unique in it's own way. So, instead of trying to describe it further I'll just say that Hughes really understands many of the silences of the world that exist.
Without a doubt Ninon Pelletier is an amazing artist. Her children's book art is always wonderful. Pelletier uses colour on each page to evoke certain emotions. Additionally the use of the same fluffy looking silence character on each page is very clever. Giving children a character to think of when they are looking for a moment of silence amongst the noise is very clever. By using this white fluffy character children can imagine it putting it's arms around them (like in the book) and feeling safe. Pelletier does a beautiful job of capturing a moment of silence on the page. Which may seem weird, as pages in books don't make noise; but when you experience the pages of this book I think you would find this to be true yourself.
I feel very strongly that the best children's book are those that have a point. It doesn't have to be a moving point but it does have to be one that will help teach a child how to handle certain situations or moments they will experience in their life. The Silence Slips In is a perfect book for a child that is quieter. For the toddler that perhaps doesn't like too much noise this is a great story to start helping a child learn and understand that they can create a silence or moment of peace inside themselves. There are places that are naturally quieter in the world and those where you need to be able to enter your head and find silence. This could also be how a child learns to find peace, love or even sanity in this noisy world of ours. A skill that is hard to develop but almost a necessity for life in our loud world.
Please note: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This is an honest and unbiased review.
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