The telling of one of the most well-known stories in te ao Māori has been republished to appeal to the youngest of readers. The winner of the Storylines Gaelyn Gordon Award for a much-loved book, How Maui Slowed The Sun, is Peter Gossage’s telling of the tale. While the book had been around for a long time, it is now available as a gorgeous board book.
Faced with too short days and long nights Maui comes up with a plan to slow the sun’s passage through the sky. With the help of his brothers, Maui sets out for the home of the sun to catch it and make it move more slowly.
We have the paperback version and have read it many times. However, it was the board book that really grabbed our toddlers’ interest. Both little ones constantly pick it up themselves, thumbing through it. Our three-year-old fell so in love with Gossage’s bright pictures, despite seeing them many, many times before, she created a piece inspired by his work at Playcentre. The smaller, sturdier format really appeals to younger readers.
Gossage was a trailblazer in bringing Māori stories to life and his vivid graphic illustrations and simple storytelling. Sadly, he died in 2016, and this board book is a beautiful taonga to introduce our younger generation to the master storyteller and artist.
REVIEWER: Rebekah Fraser
TITLE: How Maui Slowed The Sun
PUBLISHER: Penguin Random House