Book Review: A Kiwi Year, by Tania McCartney and Tina Snerling

Available in bookshops nationwide.

cv_a_kiwi_yearThis book celebrates the seasons in New Zealand as a Kiwi kid. Each month looks at the festivities we associate with that time of year. Forget Santa, snow and sleighs in December: here, we have holidays, sunshine and Pohutakawa trees.

The story introduces us to some Kiwi kids who represent a cross-section of our population. The science nerd, the sports kid, the artist, dancer, Lego lad, kapa haka performer, cricketer and reader. They feature in the double page spread for each month. The focus is on the simple, bright illustrations by Tina Snerling. These include a sentence, which explains how they are part of this month. Included on these pages are some familiar objects such as Buzzy Bee, Kiwifruit, Paua shells, Milo and the Cable Car.

Tania McCartney is an experienced author and many of the ideas for this book came from her 52-week Illustration Challenge. The chosen images are relevant and important to today’s kids. I know that my granddaughter loved finding the details on each page as we discussed what they were.

This book is part of a series introducing countries through seasons and events. It is a great way to explain culture and identity to young children. I enjoy the way that we are now comfortable in our own place and able to adapt such seasonal festivities as Christmas and Easter to our Southern climate and Kiwi ways.

Reviewed by Kathy Watson

A Kiwi Year: Twelve Months in the Life of New Zealand’s Kids
by Tania McCartney and Tina Snerling
Published by Exisle Kids Publishing
ISBN 9781925335446

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