Turtle Crossing was written to help children with the realities of moving to a new home.
He didn’t want to leave his strawberry patch just when the strawberries were getting ripe.Turtle Crossing – Malve von Hassell (pg. 12)
Malve von Hassell holds a Ph. D in anthropology from the New School for Social Research. She writes, researches, and also works as a translator. She has published several books and journal articles and has edited her grandfather’s memoirs. Ulrich von Hassell wrote it in 1944, while in prison.
Her first children’s book is Letters from the Tooth Fairy, with a new edition published in 2020. She published a historical novel – Falconer’s Apprentice – for young adults in 2015.
Turtle Crossing is a picture book for children from three to eight years and was published in April 2021.
My take on Turtle Crossing
Oliver doesn’t like it much when his parents tell him their burrow is too small and they are moving closer to their family – the Hoola Turtles – in the land down the hill. He is afraid of the unknown and pictures his cousins as scaly and smelling of thistles and other vile stuff.
He loves his current home, because it is familiar, and it has the most amazing strawberry patch. Oliver loves strawberries! So, Oliver decides to stay behind when his parents leave.
That didn’t end well. Because his parents thought he will catch up with them and didn’t turn back to look for him.
Moving is hard
Moving is hard for young children. They are used to their current home, and for many of them, it is the only home they know. It is hard for them to visualize what the new home will be like, and their imagination can run wild – and not in a positive way!
Turtle Crossing can help parents to talk to their little ones about moving. They will associate with Oliver’s resistance and fear, and it can help them to express their own feelings. If they are already in nursery school, they will be sad to leave a familiar school and their friends behind.
But through the story, they can learn that with courage they can overcome their fears, and once settled, they may realise the new home can be a great place to live, and they can make new friends at school.
They will enjoy the colourful and simple illustrations of the turtles, their home (old and new), and Oliver’s journey.
The author included interesting facts about turtles that your kiddos will enjoy, a few jokes, and a turtle fable.
Should you get Turtle Crossing for your child?
Young children will enjoy Turtle Crossing, regardless if they are faced with moving or not. They will love the turtles and the beautiful language will introduce them to many new words. And they will revel in his adventure – finding his way down the hill all by himself.
Our senior safety turtles reported that you were clever and brave when you encountered obstacles. So your cousins have saved some strawberries for you.Turtle Crossing – Malve von Hassell (pg. 30)
They will soon learn that it is not easy to be brave, but courage can help them to overcome many obstacles.
Other books your child may enjoy is Twisty Tales Vol 1: a collection of funny stories, and Bald is Beautiful: a letter to a fabulous girl. It is a great conversation starter about cancer and showing kindness to people who are different.
Did your child enjoy this book? Please let us know in the comments!