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  • Writer's pictureJosette Abruzzini

A home that's lost... can still be a source of strength.

DEAR WILD CHILD, YOU CARRY YOUR HOME INSIDE YOU tells a story about inner strength. It is a beautifully written picture book recently published by CAMERON KIDS, the children’s book imprint of CAMERON BOOKS.

Set in California, a father has a dream of building a home for his growing family. He builds the house himself, in amongst the pine and redwood trees. Beams, knobs and switches… pets, pancakes and plums… make the house a home. Following years of abundant happiness, a forest fire consumes their homestead and everything around it.

This story is written as a tender loving letter from a father to his daughter who had just left for a far-away college. Every lilting phrase draws its readers into the chirps and splashes of the redwood forest, and inside their home cluttered with love and dreams. Within the story, authors, Dr. Wallace J. Nichols and his daughter Wallace Grayce Nichols embed people, places and things with a significance that can overpower the feeling of loss.

We are reminded that we carry our dearest thoughts, experiences and places inside us. They are ours and they make us strong.

Beautiful Illustrations by Drew Beckmeyer left me gazing in wonder… as if peering through trees into the life of this family. I found the cover photo especially haunting – an older girl cherishing her childhood experiences. I took the various seasons shown in the illustration to represent the various seasons of all of our lives.

Despite the loss of the only home she’s ever known, Grayce is resilient. Anyone who has suffered a loss - a home, a loved one, or some other trauma - will be stronger and happier for having read this book.

On a separate note, Dr. Nichols is a Champion of Change who brings a wealth of experiences to this project. He is a marine biologist and the author of the bestselling book Blue Mind: The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected, and Better at What You Do. He has written over 200 scientific papers and lead numerous organizations and initiatives that have improved the health of our planet and especially its oceans.

And here's a link to an interview with the illustrator, Drew Beckmeyer. Interview with Drew Beckmeyer, DEAR WILD CHILD ( Learn more about his other PB projects by visiting Home | Drew Beckmeyer.

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