Hello! I’m Mika. You really like crusts. I’m going to name you Serious. Hi! I’ll call you Fancy. Would you like some lettuce?”
As a child, waiting can be excruciatingly boring: waiting at school, waiting to be fed, waiting for your parents’ attention, waiting to grow up. Among these waiting periods, the bus stop can bring about the most drudgery. Waiting in the cold, waiting in the blazing heat, waiting in the rain, waiting for the late bus. Cassidy’s Flock, however, sees the bus stop as a magical part of the day in her latest captivating picture book.
Mika waits with her mother at a bus stop. She dislikes the crusts of her sandwich, and so she offers it to a bird. More birds arrive to take part of Mika’s free buffet. Eventually, birds from different spaces and times come to munch on Mika’s lunch. Once the bus arrives (in the most compelling page in the book thanks to Valério’s imaginative illustrations), Mika’s mom asks her where her lunch is while a rainbow of birds chases after the bus. In this pithy imaginative tale, children will have a great time identifying different types of birds and colour variety; so, too, will children enjoy appreciating the different types of people flocking about in the city. Flock reminds children that sharing and diversity are universal ideas in all of the animal kingdom.
Lonnie Freedman is the Health Literacies Specialist at Vaughan Public Libraries.