TP-Issue14.5 | 57 TEACH READ I NG & WR I T I NG andEmil’sworld and care about the characters, but there’smore to this warm-hearted book than story fun. “I think we can, and ought, to confront children with the big questions of theworld,” Antje Dammtold bloggerMel Schuit, andThe Visitor does a great job ofmaking profound and complex themes like loneliness and anxiety accessible andmeaningful to young audiences. There is real depth to this picturebook that will staywith children long after reading and give themmuch to think about – not least away to reflect on their experiences of lockdown. E lise is scared of everything and never leaves her house. One day a paper plane flies in through an openwindow. “That’ll have to go!” says Elise, and throws it on the fire. Then comes a knock at the door. It’s a boy calledEmil, and hewants his plane back. He’d also like to use the bathroom, read a story, play a game and eat a snack. As Elise andEmil interact, colour seeps into the cold, grey room. And by the timewe leave her, Elise is folding paper planes and everything feels different. Readers are quickly drawn intoElise Damm’s artwork has a special luminosity and depth thatmakes it hugely inviting, and the gradual addition of colour says somuch about Elise’s changing emotions. To illustrate TheVisitor, Damm created amini theatre set fromwhite card decoratedwith black line details. Cut-out characterswere positioned for each scene and carefully lit before being photographed. Colourwas applied directly to themodel – it wasn’t generated digitally – and the story evolved asDammworked on it, giving the book a fresh immediacy that really comes across. Use Antje Damm’s book to explore the sensitive topics of loneliness and anxiety and help pupils reflect on their lockdown experience The Visi tor BOOK TOP I C CAREY FLUKER HUNT Book topic KS1/2 Published by Gecko Press, 2018