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Leaf-light is an enormous story with many characters, people, places, and messages. It is presented in a picture book format which allows ease of reading and lends itself to the colourful presentation. The story is set in Djaara Country which is situated around the area in Bendigo, Victoria.

In the opening pages we see children in the bush. There is a small amount of dialogue, and the story tells us that it is Spring. The double page spreads change between cartoon style pictures and full-page spreads.

There are stories about children interacting and having fun with a plank of wood, and the tiny illustrations show kangaroos, birds, lizards, wombats, and possums. The children are very creative making the plank into a diving board, see-saw and a perch in a tree. Their animal friends are very helpful and friendly.

An emu egg is found by the families and hatched in an incubator. Everyone has a lot of fun watching the chick hatch, walk and then learn to run. The children collect all kinds of food for the chick to try. They learn not to get too fond of him as he needs to become independent in the bush.

There are many wonderful stories in the pages, and much love and caring for animals and friends. Trace Balla has attempted to include many animals and birds from the area, and many of the adopted kangaroos and wombats have names. She has also included words in Djaara language with the permission of the elders.

Leaf-light is a feast of stories, characters, lifestyles and animals. It is necessary to pore over each page then to later go back and look at it again. It is a stunning tribute to all those who care for others..

Author Trace Balla
Publisher A&U Children's
ISBN 9781760526207
Distributor A&U Children's
Released August 2023