These are great questions asked in the blurb for the book, Sarah’s Shadow. The character of Sarah is wonderfully illustrated by Si Clark and delightfully real thanks to the author, Nick Jones. She is tall and gangly with stringy hair and huge eyes, and sensitive about her appearance. When her friends mock her shadow on the playground, she is upset and wants to rid herself of the offending silhouette. More subtle than other books on the subject, but nevertheless significant; this book deals with grade school bullying.
Peer pressure gets to Sarah and when an opportunity to ditch her shadow presents itself, she jumps at it. She suffers a giant personal loss in her desire to ‘fit in’. Another question might be, “Have you ever given something of value up to be accepted by your friends?”
Now without her shadow, Sarah has a new concern; will she be mocked for not having a shadow? She alters her schedule and activities to avoid addressing the issue. The climax of the narrative occurs when her friends decide to play a ‘shadow’ game and she doesn’t have one. Sarah is tearful and remorseful over her loss and wants her shadow back. We wonder how this situation will resolve itself and we are pleasantly satisfied when they are reunited.
Self-acceptance is yet another message interwoven in the text. Although Sarah is adamant that she will never again betray her shadow, it would have been nice if she had apologized to her shadow as she clearly had a personality of her own; therefore, taking responsibility for her mistake.
With social media body-shaming and schools writing policy on bullying, Sarah's Shadow should be a classroom topic of discussion in elementary schools everywhere. I would like to see Nick Jones create a discussion/workbook to be sold alongside this treasure of a story. I rate this book 5 out of 5 stars.