Monday 29 November 2021

Review on Can You Keep a Secret?


The dragons in Winnie’s village became extinct long ago… or did they? After being swept up by a gust of wind, Winnie finds herself on the back of a real life dragon! The dragon reveals it is the last of it’s kind, but will Winnie be able to keep such a huge secret?

 I was sent this gorgeous picture book from Scholastic and as I’m in a bit of a reading slump I thought I would put my usual YA books aside and read it. I immediately fell in love with the art style, as I adore illustrations where you can tell they’ve been hand-drawn. Although digital art can obviously be amazing, I just love the idea of traditionally drawn art. The art style is gorgeous and unique, and I spent a good amount of time looking at the details on every page.

The story follows a young girl called Winnie who grows up believing that her ancestors killed all the dragons. However, she soon finds out that isn’t true when a big gust of wind blows her away, causing her to land on the back of a dragon. Winnie soon learns that the dragon along with it’s friends the gryphon, the winged lion and the tree man are the last of their kind, and must stay hidden in order to avoid being killed by the humans. I loved how Winnie immediately sympathised with the creatures despite knowing how her parents felt about them. It’s important to teach children to listen to and understand those who are different from them, so I loved how this important message was shown.

 I loved that Winnie was shown to be from a multiracial family, something that I rarely see in children’s books, and YA for that matter. It’s important for children to be able to relate to the characters they read about, so I think it would be perfect for a child with a similar family to Winnie to come across this book. I absolutely love how we’re starting to see more diversity in picture books!

 This was a simple and gorgeous picture book with a clear message of acceptance and love, and how it’s important to overcome any prejudices we may have learned from our parents. I think it’s a brilliant starting point to teach young children about these important topics and gives parents a good starting point to teach them about love and acceptance


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