Once Upon a Time
A struggling young reader triumphs
There is something worrying Sarie at school. Every time her teacher says, “Children, take out your reading books,” Sarie feels sick. The letters in the book all run together, tripping her up so that she stumbles and falters, and the girls in the back always make fun of her. Only Sarie’s old friend, Auntie Anna, seems to understand that letters and words can be difficult things to grasp. And it is Auntie Anna, with the help of a book from her own daughter’s childhood, who makes a unique Sunday ritual out of giving Sarie the help she needs, until the letters that were once her adversaries begin to seem friendly – just in time for Sarie to prove herself to the laughing girls at school.
Niki Daly’s illustrations set Sarie’s tale under the vast and beautiful skies of the South African Karoo, and his encouraging story conveys the power and magic of a good book and the joy of having a good friend to share it with.
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