Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Half A World Away

Half A World Away

Libby Gleeson
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 7
Scholastic, 2007   ISBN: 978-0439889773

Amy and Louie are the best of friends. Together they have “dug holes deep enough to bury bears,” and they have seen “magical creatures in the clouds.” Every time Amy wants Louis to join her in a game, she calls out to him using her special call. “Coo-ee, Lou-ee!” she says, and Louie always comes over to join her. Similarly, when Louie would like Amy to share in his game, he calls out “Coo-ee, Am-ee!” and the little girl is soon at this side.

Then one day Amy moves away “to the other side of the world,” and poor Louie doesn’t feel like doing any of the things that he used to do with Amy. Far apart, the two friends think about each other, “Every night and every day.” The two children are so far apart that when Louie is awake, Amy is asleep. If Louie calls Amy really loudly she will not hear him because he is so far away and because she is asleep in her bed. Or maybe not.

In this beautifully illustrated picture book, Libby Gleeson explores the nature of friendship, and she celebrates the magical connection that a pair of children share. Freya Blackwood’s beautifully atmospheric illustrations compliment the text perfectly, capturing the warmth of the children’s friendship and the special relationship that unites them, even when they are many many miles apart.