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Family Law

The leading authority on all aspects of family law

02 OCT 2015

Book review – Jack by Helen Victoria Bishop, illustrated by Simon Murray

Book review – Jack by Helen Victoria Bishop, illustrated by Simon Murray

Jack by Helen Victoria Bishop, illustrated by Simon Murray

'Jack provides parents, grandparents and professionals working with children with a wonderful opportunity to discuss with their young children the delicate and sensitive subject of family break-up'


Jack is a picture story book aimed at 4–11 year olds whose parents have separated or are separating. Jack is a little boy who is confused and upset about his parents’ separation; he thinks he may be to blame for the separation, and feels alone and wonders if his parents still love him. Black Cat is a magical talking cat, who chats with Jack and offers explanations and reassurances to Jack, and encourages him to speak to Mum or Dad when he feels sad or confused. 'The key to life is that you are loved,' says Black Cat – a simple but profound statement. With his wise and calm approach and words, Black Cat gives Jack the confidence and support he needs at this very difficult time.

Charming, sensitively written and reassuring, this book is one that children will be able to read on their own, as well as with Mum or Dad, and draw comfort and reassurance from the wise Black Cat. Children will be able to relate to Jack both through the words and the eloquent illustrations, and recognise the emotions, fear and concerns he talks about with Black Cat. This book will be one children, either with or without parents or/and grandparents, can read time and time again, each time drawing comfort and encouragement from Jack and his Black Cat. The illustrations start off as fairly simple line drawings, and as Jack grows with confidence, so do the illustrations, becoming more and more detailed as the story progresses until right at the end when Jack is feeling secure, loved and assured, which is demonstrated with a wonderful burst of colour and detail in the final illustration.

Jack provides parents, grandparents and professionals working with children with a wonderful opportunity to discuss with their young children the delicate and sensitive subject of family break-up and the emotions and fears the children may be experiencing, while following Jack's own journey and growing in confidence alongside him. A well-written and thoughtful book on a complicated issue, Jack should be on the bedside table of every separated parent and in every nursery and school.

Jack, by Helen Victoria Bishop and illustrated by Simon Murray, is available in paperback for £6.99 from Amazon.

Published by Atlantis Children's Books Limited

ISBN: 0957108885
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