All Of This Is For You - Little Book of Kindness by Ruby Jones
Ruby Jones’ name was thrown into the spotlight following the tragedy of the massacre in Christchurch in 2019. The simple drawing of two women, one wearing a hijab and the other with a top knot in her hair, embracing each other with the quoted caption from the Prime Minister of ‘This is your home and you should have been safe here’ resonated both here in New Zealand and around the world. The show of connection, love and compassion touched hearts and created an opportunity for the artist to begin spreading a message of kindness through her illustrations. Time Magazine even commissioned a cover for the international edition of the magazine.
A year after that moment of sharing an image that has gone viral and remains a symbol of hope from a time of great tragedy and her collection All of This is For You has been published. In it are a series of affirmative mantra-like expressions with beautifully drawn illustrations that - like the one from the Mosque attack - capture so much love and togetherness in a simple image.
It is more of a picture book with elements of wisdom and courage throughout but it has the undercurrent of peace and connection for all. The illustrations are stylistically similar but retain a sense of hope and future-looking prosperity.
Some of the yogi-esque mantras are a little cliche in places. Sentiments like it’s OK to be yourself and take time out etc etc are nice to be reminded of, but they are not overly inspiring. They are comforting nonetheless. It is the imagery that accompanies the writing that really pushes the book along.
The book is endearing and stunningly presented. Overall, it is one of those treasure books that will bring joy as a gift or comfort as an owner.
Reviewer: Chris Reed
Penguin, RRP $23.99