‘Her Right Foot’ by Dave Eggers
Illustrated by Shawn Harris
Following our recent family holiday to the USA (yes my husband and I really did take a crazy flight for over 18 hours with three little children in tow!) my children have loved reading the books we bought back home from there over and over again, but this one is a firm favourite for all of us! Every one of my kids has engaged with this book in a different way, mainly down to their ages, but I am hoping that the powerful and positive central message has resonated just as much with my 7 year old as it has with my 9 year old.
‘Her Right Foot’ is a unique picture book that touches on both the impressive historical building of the famous statue, alongside the current political debate and ethical issue of immigration. Dave Eggers handles this complex subject in a clear and powerful way for children. It is hard not to engage with his bold images and thoughtful words ‘the torch she carries is a symbol of enlightenment, lighting the path to liberty and freedom’. His book has definitely helped me to raise the issue of respect, tolerance and friendship for all with my children. My children are lucky enough to be schooled in a multicultural environment that celebrates equality and diversity and it took them a while to realise that not all people feel the same way as they do. Dave Eggers utilises the symbolism of the Statue of Liberty to help remind children that it was build to welcome ‘the poor, the tired, the struggling to breath free’ to a new world and he does so brilliantly. The architectural facts he includes make it fascinating for the parents too (always a winner!) and the twist at the end stays with you for a long time.
Whilst this book is a little long for smaller readers and certainly not humorous, it is impactful and uplifting!