Tribute to Anna Dewdney
I would like to pay tribute to Anna Dewdney the author and illustrator of the Llama Lama Books. She died at
the age of 50 on September 3, 2016 after a 15 month battle with cancer.
She began her career in children's books when she illustrated "The Peppermint Race " by Dian Curtis Regan (Henry Holt,) 1994 and she illustrated a number of other children's chapter books in 1990s. Then in 2005 the Viking publishing Co published the first book that she wrote and illustrated, "Llama Llama red pajama" Her series has more then 10 books and has sold more than 10 million combined copies. She also wrote "Roly Poly Pangolin," "Nobunny's Perfect and Nelly Knu and Daddy Too," She recently finished her new book, "Little Excavator." which will be published in June by Viking Children's Books.
Anna leaves a legacy of picture Books for young children. She believed a Good Picture Book can be read to a child by an adult and they both experience joy. Watch for an animated series to come out in 2017 produced by Netflix.
A Quote from her publisher, Jen Loja, president of Young Readers, said:
"The entire Penguin young family is heartbroken. And as we grieve. we also celebrate Anna's life, in
dedicating ourselves to carrying her mission of putting books into as many little hands as possible. We will miss her so but consider ourselves so lucky to be her publishing family and her partner in her legacy."
I believe I can speak for all the parents and children who have enjoyed her books and who will enjoy her books in the years to come that we also will celebrate her life by reading and enjoying her Llama Lama books
I will end by quoting from Anna's 2013 opinion piece for the Wall Street Journal emphasizing that "empathy is as important as literacy" when it comes to educating children. When we read with a child, we are doing so much more than teaching him to read or instilling in her a love of language," she wrote We are doing something that I believe is just as powerful, and it is something that we are losing as a culture: by reading with a child, we are teaching that child to be human. When we open a book and share our voice and imagination with a child, that child learns to see the world through someone else's eyes.
All of the Llama Llama books are written for young pre-school children and the problems and fears that they have. These books are great to create dialog with your pre school children about their fears and life in general. In this book Red Pajama Mama reads to Llama Llama then leaves to go down to the kitchen. Llama Llama wants a drink but what he really wants is for Mama to come back. Mama does come back and this story deals with the fears a young child has when it is bed time.
In this book Llama Llama is going to Grandpa and Grandma's for his First overnight stay. He has fun with Grandma and Grandpa but when it is bedtime he discovers he left fuzzy Llama in the car. He panics when he discovers this but Grandpa comes up with a Fuzzy Toy he had when he was little.