Over nearly a century, Adoette’s seen many changes. Some have been joyful, while others difficult and destructive. Then again, while there was neither electricity nor cars when she arrived in the street, the area changed to becoming so busy that she was no longer wanted.

However, Adoette’s demise caused a local revolution. Although it was unsuccessful the fight to save Adoette sparked something in the community.

We’re treated to a glimpse through the history of Adoette in the changing toned pictures, with their varied perspectives. Then again, we feel sadness at the changes she endures, from the families in her early years, to the farewells, and eventual busy-ness of later years. All of this is a glimpse into the real-life experience of writer and illustrator, Lydia Monks, and a local campaign in her Sheffield neighbourhood.

Bookwagon loves the poignant, beautifully told story of Adoette, the personification, the closeness of neighbourhood, alongside the positive message taken from the sadness of loss. We recommend this picture book for reading aloud, talking over, loving and sharing.

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Lydia Monks

(Andersen Press)

What happens when it seems that Adoette is no longer wanted? She ‘lived on the street all of her life, until she was 100 years old’. We’re asked to ‘imagine all the changes she saw!‘ It seems that when she arrived, there was no electricity in the street, and no cars! What’s more, the street was full of families and children. Adoette’s experiences included good and bad times, people who stayed, and those who left. However, as time passed, it seems Adoette’s ‘no longer wanted‘. Although local residents protest there is nothing to be done, it seems… Yet might there be a phoenix from the ashes? Then again, what are the lessons to be learned and shared from the neighbourhood’s experience?
Lydia Monks is inspired by events in her local Sheffield street. Her picture book demonstrates the power of community alongside the need to grow and preserve nature for our history and wellbeing. Like Wishtree, Adoette is a wise, poignant and considered picture of local history and community alongside an acknowledgement of change. Bookwagon loves this title’s environmental and community message. This is a confident and beautiful book with a message that is vital to each of us.


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