Ivanhoe Swift Left Home at Six
Allen & Unwin, 2019
32pp., hbk., RRP $A24.99
Ivanhoe Swift left home when he was six.
He had heard many songs about the world, and it was time to see it for himself.
‘We won’t know where you are!’ cried his father.
‘I’ll know where you are,’ said Ivanhoe. ‘And you can look out for my kite in the sky. Goodbye, parents!’
This is a touching story about the young child’s need to push the boundaries and explore the world beyond the grip of their mother’s hand or the garden gate. Ivanhoe’s parents understand this and are prepared to let him go, but knowing that some of the things he will see and the people he will meet might not be as nice as they are, they ensure that he knows he is loved and is always welcome home.
Go well, as you travel, over the world as you roam…
But if you grow weary of your journey, then let the sea bring you home.
So armed with his bag , a hat and a pencil, the map from his wall, his kite and the songs in his head, he sets off on his adventure. And sure enough he meets the nice and not-so-nice, braves the woods and sees the ocean but when his kite. now battered and tattered, is taken by the wind, he knows it’s time to head home.
Young children will resonate with Ivanhoe’s desire to see the world and be inspired to create their own journeys, but will their parents be as trusting as Ivanhoe’s?