Title: Lenny’s Book of Everything
Author: Karen Foxlee
Published by Allen & Unwin
RRP: $19.99

I read this book late last year and fell in love with it. One would think it would be easy to write a review for a book so astoundingly beautiful, but I find it really hard to even start, hence my lateness! The fact that this book has been shortlisted for the Children’s Book Council Awards this year is no surprise. Karen Foxlee’s writing seeps into your heart, as does Lenny and Davey. Davey is Lenny’s younger brother and he cannot stop growing. When their mother can no longer ignore there is something wrong, they save for the bus fare to see a specialist. While the treatment he receives halts the growth for a little while, it is not long before he is growing again and Davey’s health suffers.

Told from Lenny’s viewpoint, there is much love in this little family. With a mostly absent father and a mother who struggles to make ends meet, Lenny and Davey are a shining light. Lenny and Davey dream of discovering the natural wonders they learn about in their weekly edition of Burrell’s Build-It-at-Home Encyclopedia.

Written mostly in prose, with letters here and there, this is a beautiful book. Each chapter begins with a letter of the Burrell’s edition they receive, an update on Davey’s height and the date. Lenny is narrator and we see the world through her eyes.

This book is for all ages. It is eloquent and touching, artfully written with not a word wasted or out of place, truly a masterpiece.

Download teaching notes here.

Download reading notes here.

Many thanks to Allen & Unwin for supplying this book for review.