Maya's Storm is the latest instalment of the 'Mister P' series of insightful stories about a polar bear who unexpectedly visits different families facing a range of different real-life situations, from living with physical disabilities to being young carers. Each brilliantly entertaining story works as a standalone and is well pitched for readers in lower KS2 or as a read-aloud to be shared together.
This story features Maya, who once lived in another country but now lives with her new family in a coastal village in England. She lives with Mum, Dad and an older brother and sister. Granny Anne lives in a cottage not far away and helps Maya to create a memory box when she was feeling sad about losing her family. She says that as you get older your memories sometimes disappear so it is important to keep them somewhere safe. Maya thinks Granny Anne is joking, but her Mum and Dad are worried about her as she keeps forgetting things.
One evening, Maya sees something strange out of her bedroom window in the sea. After following some clues, they find a polar bear whose luggage tag tells them that his name is Mister P. Now Maya and Granny Anne must work together to keep Mister P a secret from Mum and Dad, whilst still having many adventures along the way!
Although we are never told exactly what happened to Maya’s family, the book subtly alludes to the fact that she is a refugee and has lost her family. After just the first two pages, children may have many questions about Maya’s past: What happened to her family? Why did Maya have to leave her family? Will she see her family again? The story also sensitively deals with a family member having dementia. The more time that Maya spends with Granny Anne, the more she realises that Granny Anne does seem to be forgetting things. Will she tell Mum and Dad about Mister P and get Granny Anne the help she needs?
Charming illustrations coupled with the short chapters make Me and Mister P: Maya’s Storm accessible and appealing to independent readers experiencing their first chapter books.
Reviewed by: Kirsten Hopwood, Year 3 Teacher