The Elephant

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The Elephant

By Peter Carnavas
Juvenile Fiction Ages 7–12
ISBN: 978-1-77278-102-1
List Price: $19.95 CAD / $17.95 USD
Hardcover with dust jacket & reinforced trade binding
Trim size: 5 x 7.75 in / 12.7 x 19.685 cm
Pages: 176

Publication date: March 17, 2020

Distributed in the U.S. by Ingram Publisher Services

A jewel of a middle-grade novel about a resilient little girl who longs for her dad to break free from the elephant of his depression

When Olive’s dad drags himself to work in the morning, the elephant goes with him. When he comes home again, so does the elephant. It’s always there, heavy and silent, casting a shadow of sadness over him. Olive knows it has been like this since her mother passed away when she was a year old, and she can’t stand to see her father burdened anymore. With help from her grandfather and her best friend Arthur, she hatches a plan to rid her family of the elephant once and for all. Before long, she’ll learn that while happiness isn’t that simple, small things can move mountains—or elephants.

Award-winning author-illustrator Peter Carnavas portrays a child’s response to her father’s depression with naïve wisdom. In defiance of the looming grey presence, The Elephant is an intergenerational story of resilience, family, and hope.

Digital review copies available on NetGalley!

Reviews:
“A warm-hearted book of emotional learning, creative problem-solving, and genuine care for others. Recommended for anyone in need of hope for a path to happiness.”—School Library Journal

“A delicate, lovely story about caregiver depression that will validate and empower readers.”—Kirkus Reviews

“The warm, plain, rich written text is more than sufficient to mark The Elephant as excellent, but Carnavas’s playful, emotionally evocative line drawings catapult the work into the exceptional realm….[A] must-buy for everyone who knows anyone touched by mental health issues – which is everyone. This book belongs in every home, library and classroom. Highly Recommended.”—CM Magazine

“Lovingly illustrated…beautifully told.”—Youth Services Book Review

The Elephant is a great book for a lot of reasons. From a structural standpoint, it helps ease young readers into the novel format….Thematically, The Elephant deals with issues of loss and depression without getting too heavy.”—Kids Make Mess

“Exquisite, moving, and utterly unforgettable…I absolutely loved this darling story and its tender approach in dealing with loss, depression, and despair.”—Christina Ammirati

“The imagery and simple, child view of this story are amazing….Olive is an inspiring girl, and I found the charming illustrations to be the perfect complement to her story.”—Kiss the Book Jr.

“This is a great book to help kids understand when someone in their lives is struggling with depression….The illustrations for this book are simple, yet show so much…[they] bring the story to life for young readers.”—Canadian Bookworm

“This story is a great metaphor for depression or mental health problems. Olive can physically see how her father’s depression is dragging him down, as if he has a giant elephant following him….I loved this book!”—Jill Jemmett