When You Were Little by Rebecca Donaldson

Title: When You Were Little: A Tale of the Year 2020
Author/Illustrator: Rebecca Donaldson
Published:  2021
Publisher: Independently Published
Readership: Children
Genre: Fiction
Rating: ★★★★★
RRP: $24.95

I reviewed a copy of When You Were Little from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

In the year 2020, the world was rocked by the COVID-19 virus, and our lives as we knew them were suddenly turned upside-down.

This is a story for all of the new parents who never imagined that they would be raising babies during a global pandemic, but who did it anyway with strength and love.

A tale to be told for years to come, with a beautiful silver lining that will never be forgotten.

With a year like 2020, it’s unsurprising that there have been plenty of books written for children to help them understand everything from lockdowns, self-isolation, remote learning and more. And rightly so – it’s something that they experienced and has had (and continues to have) a massive impact on everyone’s lives.

When You Were Little is slightly different. Written by Melbourne author and illustrator, Rebecca Donaldson (who’s also a midwife and Maternal and Child Health nurse – clearly a woman of many talents!), this book has been written for those children born in 2020 and their families. Being so little, many of these children will (hopefully) not know the same restrictions that existed when they were born as they grow older, and Donaldson’s book is a way to explain to them what the world was like when they were born/young.

In many ways, it’s a historical record of staying home to stay safe and keep others safe, to get to know your family/the people you live with in such a different way. Donaldson wrote this for her son, who was born in 2020, and it’s both a reflection on what it was like as well as a hopeful story for the future.

It’s beautifully told in verse, and each page has a beautifully illustrations that are simple, bright and engaging. There’s something lovely about a children’s book with a very clean design that draws your eyes directly to the pictures and makes you look closer.

When You Were Little is a gorgeous little story that would make a wonderful keepsake or gift for families who welcomed babies (or had very young children, who lived through the events of last year. As an independently published title, you can pre-order a copy through Rebecca Donaldson’s website here.

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