About the book: Starting a new life in a new country, a young boy feels lost and alone – until he meets an old man who keeps racing pigeons. Together they pin their hopes on a race across Europe and the special bird they believe can win it: King of the Sky.
Reasons for selection: Nicola Davies and Laura Carlin’s partnership (also The Promise) has produced a profound yet understated story about loneliness, friendship, intergenerational relationships, the restorative relationship between humans and animals and overcoming adversity. Set against the backdrop of a post Second World War mining community in South Wales, the story offers opportunities for rich discussion about changing landscapes, industrial and rural landscapes. Davies’ poetic text always gets to the heart of the matter evoking thought and feeling simultaneously. Carlin’s illustrations are also driven by emotional truth rather than convention. This can make them visually challenging but also liberating. Text and image provide many opportunities for text to world discussion, language study and developing visual literacy.
About Take One Book: The books in the Take One Book collection can be used in conjunction with the Take One Book website, or independently. Take One Book is Just Imagine’s programme for teaching reading and English using high quality literature. You can find further information and free exemplar units on the Take One Book website takeonebook.org
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