We’re celebrating the 75th anniversary of the Windrush arrival reading GRANNY CAME HERE ON THE EMPIRE WINDRUSH by Patrice Lawrence and illustrated by Camilla Sucre. As the granddaughter of Caribbean elders, I didn’t know much about how my Grandparents came to England other than they arrived by boat and had to leave two of their children behind, including my father. Sending for them later once they had settled down. While my grandparents arrived a few years after the initial Windrush arrival, reading this book helps us understand what it must have been like for those who came. How much they missed home at first and the culture shock of the weather!
Thank you to Nosy Crow for sending us a PR copy.
When little Ava needs to decide which inspirational figure to dress as for a special day at school, she struggles to choose. Her Granny sets to work telling stories of inspirational historical figures like Mary Seacole and Rosa Parks while searching for items for a costume in an old trunk. At the bottom of the trunk they discover some mementos from when Ava’s Granny first came to England on the Empire Windrush and she learns of the struggles of what it was like to leave everything you’ve ever known behind and how her Granny made it through. Ava then realises there is a hero much closer to home. Who will she decide to dress up as for school?
We loved this book! It tells such an important story of the challenges and achievements of the Windrush generation. Stories and memories that are slowly dying out as our elders leave this world as both my Grandparents have. I also love how the stories of other Black inspirational figures are woven into the story as well. It shows how ordinary people are also heroes.
The illustrations are beautiful and striking with a vintage feel and colour palette. The book is cozy and heart-warming and should be on every child’s bookshelf.