Book Title: The Year We Fell From Space (available here)
Author: Amy Sarig King
Publication Date: Feb 2020
Most Suitable For: Years 5-6
Reviewed By: Natasha Kendrick
In a world where discussing mental health issues is so important, Amy Sarig King gives us a story where this topic is explored and we are given an insight into the effects of ill mental health on a family and, importantly, ways of dealing with them. Liberty used to live with her mum, dad and sister Jilly - all connected like planets in a solar system. Then things start to change and the planets begin falling out of alignment. The reason is divorce. Her parents separate and Liberty finds herself helping others and wanting to please everyone. Not even the stars in the sky (her life-long passion) seem to interest her anymore; she feels sad, angry, lonely and confused. With her dad having moved out and changing from the man she once knew, Liberty finds it more and more difficult to keep herself rotating and finds solace in a rock from outer space. But can Liberty find the help she needs before she explodes like a big bang? The story focuses on the importance of family bonds and how talking to other people can help you to get through difficult times. Liberty’s dad suffers from depression, which causes the family to break down. As Liberty starts to feel different emotions and take on the pressure of trying to please her mum, dad and younger sister all at once, she starts to worry that she is not ok herself and may suffer from the same condition as her dad. It is a story of worry but with a positive ending and message. This book could be used in PSHE or SMSC lessons looking at mental health and the importance of talking to friends, family or counsellors to get the help you need. I enjoyed being part of Liberty’s journey and the links to space make this an easy and enjoyable read.
Many thanks to the publisher for sending us a review copy of this book and to Review Panel member Natasha for reviewing it.
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