Manuscript help, book reviews and author interviews
Written by children ranging from 8 to 16 years, The Sri Lankan Chronicles is a collection of short stories and a poem from Sri Lanka. Two things struck me about this collection. One : that there are so many young ones out there who write, and are confident about sharing it with the rest of the world. Two: they may be young, and their voices not yet fully developed, but these children have the basics of storytelling right. Their sheer optimism is humbling – from trying to save forests and animals, making good win over evil, to stories of sacrificing for things that we love – all in an attempt to make the world a better place!
In ‘The Human Forest”, the protaganists make a huge sacrifice to keep the last acre of forest from being cut down; in ‘The Banyan Tree Mystery’, Dilshani manages to solve a murder committed centuries ago while in ‘Diabolus’, a young boy cannot escape his destiny anymore. The stories are all set in the world the children are familiar with – the island country of Sri Lanka is beautifully depicted – from its villages, sea and mountains, to the greed that is destroying forests and the land, and the efforts of many to save their environment and country.
The book is nicely illustrated as well.
In the single poem of the collection “The Song of the Wild’, the young poet/author wonders about the wildlife,
” Are they boring?
Are they fun?
Do they have many feelings?
Could they have none!”
This collection of stories and a poem filled me with hope – that the future may be secure in the hands of the young, who recognize the destruction we have caused on the environment – and who will take corrective action to restore the balance!
Published by Timbuktoo Young Authors Publishing( Bangalore)
Children always surprise me with their original content. Having been a teacher, I have often wondered at their instinctive and incisive ability to view situations. At the same time, they can be so persuasive with their innocent and simple solutions to complex everyday problems. Sincerely hope that all these young writers are able to make a difference to this warped world. Kudos to the publishers for identifying and encouraging such talent.