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THE LITTLE SECRET

 

Le petit secret - Séverine Vidal & Clémence Monnet - 23 x 24 cm - 32 pages - €14.00 - February 2020

 

This little secret is a bit of a strange and slightly bizarre story. Gentle and poetic, it shows the world through the eyes of a child, from another land. Not necessarily a hostile world, but a world in which they do not yet belong.

 

Will discovers a big family picnic on the beach where he arrived. Everyone is laughing and speaking loudly. Suddenly Albertine whispers: “I know a secret! About somebody here.” Suddenly, everyone stops talking. They all think that their secret has been discovered. Someone coughs, another blushes, someone looks down at their feet, another says “okay, okay”… When Albertine walks over to Will, he expects the worst. To be forced to run away again.

But Albertine says: “I know your secret. Don’t worry, I won’t tell anyone. Sometimes I feel like I’m not from here either.”

 

This picture book is a beautiful allegory. It tells the story of Will’s exclusion, who could be a migrant, or a refugee, it is not said. Either way, he is a stranger, a spectator, watching a party where people appear to be happy and pleased together, but where in reality everyone has something to hide. But is that really such a bad thing?

 

 

Stéphanie Vernet

stephanie@thepicturebookagency.com