As we move away from summer sun into autumn winds and winter chills, you know there are going to be some rainy days where you are stuck...

Sing to the Moon Blog Tour

Friday, October 12, 2018 BookBairn Blog 2 Comments


As we move away from summer sun into autumn winds and winter chills, you know there are going to be some rainy days where you are stuck at home. But imagine living in a country where the rainy season happens twice a year and can last for months at a time. My kids love to get outside and run around and I've noticed that recently BookBairn's imagination really takes flight when she is outdoors. So the prospect of keeping this imaginative little kids entertained during rainy days will take a lot of imagination of my own. Lucky for us we have some wonderful books to entertain and inspire us!

And one that has brought home that exact message - that stories entertain and inspire - is Sing to the Moon by Nansubuga Nagadya Isdahl and Sandra van Doorn. This is the story of a little Ugandan boy and his grandfather who get stuck indoors by a rainy day (one of many during Uganda's two rainy seasons) and with an overactive imagination being stuck indoors provides one thing: boredom. Or does it? 



Over the opening pages, we meet the little boy and delve into his imagination - intergalactic adventures, ocean voyages, forest picnics with mythical beasts. But when he awakes to pouring rain, he becomes disheartened. His grandfather, Jjajja, tells him stories of his childhood as they do chores around the house and the the stories of lost cities, kings and crooks and even the beginning of the universe. And suddenly the day has passed. But more than that, they have grown closer, strengthening their love, and creating a little bit of real magic.


This is a lovely story sharing the love of hand-me-down storytelling from one generation to another. And is illustrated with beautiful subtlety and softness, with great contrast between the moments filled with wonder and those of grey rainy day sadness. It really is beautifully brought to life.

We are delighted to welcome Nansubuga Nagadya Isdahl to share her thoughts on what inspired her to write for children as part of the blog tour.

How, by writing for children, I unexpectedly connected the dots...

Children's book authors often get asked why they write for children. For me, it was quite simple really. When I was pregnant with my daughter, I could not find a book about Uganda that spoke to the country's beauty and magic in a way that resonated with me. As it turned out, I was also then writing to fill a gap for other children who longed to see their culture or country or community reflected in an everyday story.

I loved to read as a child (still do) and I write for my day job, albeit in a totally different context, so my leap (of faith) into children's literature was not such a stretch. But since my first attempt at writing for children a few years ago, I have conceptualized an unimaginable number of ideas for children's books. What I have now realized is that writing books for kids, in the most organic way, has allowed me to combine several of my interests...

I work in international development during the day where I write for global programs in education, social protection, and public health. I also have an arts consultancy with my husband where we aim to advance the creative and cultural sectors using contemporary African art as a platform (archivalafrica.com). In short, I have life-long interests in culture, art, social justice, and storytelling. Children's book writing has unexpectedly allowed for the merging of these interests into one crisp (and hopefully impactful) offering.

While kids' books are encouraged not to be didactic, I often have a social justice or cultural empowerment thread running through my work even if it's not obvious. I don't set out to do this as I write from my heart, this is just how the books manifest. In addition, although it's not typical for authors to have inputs into the illustration process, I have been fortunate enough to work on two books with the same incredible publisher and incredibly-talented illustrator, both of whom have valued my contributions. This is also where my interest in art fits nicely as the prose and illustration literally transform children's books into 'works of art' once finished. Finally, and perhaps ultimately, writing books allows me to tell a very simple story. That story will invariably be about love: love of family, love of culture, love of simple days (like the ones in my current book, Sing to the Moon), love of dreams, any number of loves - love being the ultimate dot connector.

In this way, writing for children has given me the pleasure of endlessly connecting the meaningful and magnificent dots in my life. Initially, I did not write for this reason, but this certainly is what keeps pushing me forward. Thank you.

Thank you so much, Nansubuga, for sharing that with us. To find out more about this wonderful book or learn more about it's creators check out the other stops on the blog tour, pictured below.


If you struggle for a rainy day activity, why not pick up a wonderful book, like this one?
Happy Reading,
Mummy and the bairns xx



Disclaimer: I was sent Sing to the Moon for  free for review purposes by the publishers. Words and opinions are my own. If you click on the title or image of the book you will be sent to Amazon.co.uk using an affiliate link. This means that if you choose to purchase on Amazon.co.uk, I will receive a small sum (around 20-70p per book) from amazon at no extra cost to you. I understand that you may not want to use an affiliate link, but if you like reading our blog please just think of it as a small tip for a tip-off to an awesome book. And know that your support means I can buy more books! For more information check out our 'For Our Readers' section.

2 comments:

  1. I love the idea behind this book and nice to get the thoughts of the author.

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    1. Yes, I found it very interesting to read about her motivations behind her writing!

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