This glorious title is the result of a community writing and publishing project for children, set up by Townsville City Libraries and Black Ink Press. The project aimed to enable Indigenous children to develop an illustrated story with Indigenous mentors and to have authentic young Indigenous voices communicating to the young readers.
Author and illustrator Gabrielle Kim Sum was about 12-years-old when she set down this simple memoir of a family’s brief trip to the Gold Coast in Queensland. The title accurately describes the arc of the story, but misses the child’s sense of astonishment when she goes from a small town to the hyper-developed Gold Coast. Dream World, hotel swimming pools, giant shopping centres and dinner in unfamiliar surroundings are all part of the adventure. So too was seeing the sprawling suburbs of Brisbane and the surrounding landscape from the window of the aeroplane.
The bold, simple illustrations in watercolour, pencil and crayon are tightly cropped to create maximum impact. The result is short tale that many children will relate to or wish they might go on. These are authentic young indigenous voices communicating to the young readers of Australia.
The librarians and Black Ink Press worked with a group of secondary students who came to the Thuringowa library after school every Friday. Encouraged by several indigenous writers and illustrators, these young people each developed a story they wanted to tell young readers.
Series: A Little Black Book