Olu and Greta (Hardcover)
Olu and Greta are cousins who live very far away from each other. But even though they couldn't get on a plane today, they know there are plenty of ways to stay in touch. I love the bold graphic style of this book - so unlike most books on the shelves. And the story is one so many of us can relate to as we navigate social distancing!— Johanna
The geographical and cultural distance between two cousins is counteracted by the universalities of childhood and the dream of uniting.
Olu lives in Lagos, Nigeria; his cousin, Greta, lives in Milan, Italy. Though their lives may be different, their ways of living and playing are quite similar. They both roller skate; they both skip down the street; they both play with toy trains, trucks, and boats... and they both dream of meeting and being together. Debut author-illustrator Diana Ejaita references her own childhood and heritage to create a rich, poignant, and authentic portrayal of Nigeria, of Italy, and of the unity of childhood.
About the Author
Diana Ejaita works as an illustrator and textile designer in Berlin. What sets her illustrations apart is a combination of dramatically contrasting areas of black and white with soft patterns and textures that create images that portray the strength of femininity. Born in Cremona, Italy, her aesthetic pays homage to her lineage. "I am mostly into Central African culture; I love its literature, arts and textile traditions. But as a child of migration and of interracial parents, I am very driven by the issues of colonial/post-colonial effects, racial and gender discrimination, and identity research."
"A compelling bicontinental story of kinfolk, uniquely illustrated by an artist who’s lived the experience." --Kirkus (STARRED REVIEW)
"A salient reminder that love and connection transcend difference and distance." --Publishers Weekly (STARRED REVIEW)
"Viewers will get a visual treat and a reminder that they’re not alone across cultures." --The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"[Two cousins] interactions are described in spare, accessible text and pictured in eye-catchingly distinctive digital and pencil illustrations." --Horn Book Review
BEST BOOK (2021) --Kirkus