The Longest Strongest Thread


It is the final visit to grandmother’s before the granddaughter moves to her new home. Her ‘suitcase is SO HEAVY’. As Grandma sews, her granddaughter reasons that her grandmother could not walk to their new home, but wishes upon an aeroplane. Then she dreams of an ‘enormous pin magnet‘ that might catapult Grandma to her.

Yet, as Grandma stitches in her warm, sewing studio, we realise the threads that bond the two. Grandma reminds her granddaughter that they are bound by The Longest Strongest Thread that continues despite distances and separation. Thereafter, in winter there is always the lake…

We see the granddaughter overwhelmed by packing cases, the two pulled apart across a double page, yet bound by a new coat which the granddaughter wears, and a blue spool of thread.

The limited colour palette and then the clever changes of perspective and use of white framing enhance the emotion of this book. Furthermore, the way the spools of thread twist, turn and connect engages and reaffirms our empathy and the meaning. The Longest Strongest Thread is a beautiful, meaningful, emotionally resonant picture book in which Bookwagon delights.

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The Longest Strongest Thread

Inbal Leitner

(Scallywag Press)- hardback

Grandma will stay in her home when her granddaughter moves away. It seems that this home is warm and has Grandma’s ‘sewing studio‘. Today is the final visit to say Farewell- ‘I wish she could come too’.
Is it possible that if Grandma made an aeroplane she could fly [to me]? After all she could not walk all the way to the new home. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if there was ‘an enormous pin magnet‘  that would ‘pull her to me‘ when [I] wished.
Meanwhile, Grandma tries to reassure for it seems that ‘we two have The Longest Strongest Thread in the whole world’. It means that we are tied and bonded tight, whatever the distance.
As the granddaughter mourns, we watch Grandma sew the coat worn by the little girl who leaves the white frames and enters the giant packing cases. The huge white canvas trespassed by the slender, blue thread speaks of huge distances but also the continuation of love and togetherness.
It is difficult to read this picture book  by Inbal Leitner without feeling emotional. Rather like Evelyn Del Rey is Moving Away, we ache with our characters. There is silence and stillness, but then the hope of the winter when ‘the lakes freeze…’ Furthermore, there is The Longest Strongest Thread. 


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