Tuesday, 12 May 2020

Review + Author Interview Talking is Not my Thing by Rose Robbins (Children's, Picture book,10E/10E)

 February 2020, Scallywag Press, 32 pages, Hardback, Review copy

Summary from Scallywag Press
 The autistic sister of this delightful sibling duo knows what she wants to say, but can’t say it out loud. However, there is plenty of fun she and her brother can have together without verbal communication, and she is often one step ahead of him!

Nayu's thoughts
I am not sure if it is Rose's other book that I've read, but I have read books with non-verbal siblings, but never from the view of the sibling in question. Having an insight into what the non-verbal sister is thinking was extremely interesting. It must be so hard not to be able to communicate easily with others, especially when something is wrong, which happens for the sister when a beloved toy goes missing. All that is on her mind is finding the toy, but because she is so focused on that she doesn't even use her flashcards when her family try and work out what is going on. It doesn't matter as the toy is found safe and well, and love transcends words 

I loved how cute the illustrations are, the bright colours work with the story and I definitely will reread this book in the future (it is being donated to a local school a friend works at, so will hopefully help many children understand non-verbal friends easier.) 

Find out more on Rose's website and in the interview below! 

Question and Answer with Rose Robbins

Meet Rose!
Nayu: Here are a few questions which Rose kindly answered about Talking Is Not My Thing

What made you decide to tell the story from the girl’s point of view, and to have her brother echo her thoughts by his words?

I already had a book from the brothers perspective, and I was curious about what his sister thought about everything, and how she managed being non-verbal. I suppose I exercised my curiosity by writing a book about it! The sister communicates with the reader through her thought bubbles, but I wanted to make it clear that the brother and other characters were not able to read those thoughts.

What kind of research did you have to do for the book to make it accurate?

I read a lot about speech and language therapy, as well as running a few drafts by people with lived experience of being non-verbal. Research for me is vitally important, as I want to be accurate and relatable wherever possible. 

What would you like readers to take away from the book?

That all forms of communication are equal.

Will there be more books about the siblings exploring other areas of life?

I hope so! There is a lot more to explore, maybe a wordless picture book next?

What is your favourite snack and drink when writing?

I love crackers with dips and cheese, and I will usually drink tea… But if I could have anything, then I love a banana milkshake!

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