Opening Little Boxes by Kees Lodder, Cathy Casey, Manuela Bertão and Alex Casey
Written during the COVID-19 lockdown, Opening Little Boxes is a beautifully written book, full of wisdom and love. Extraordinarily, it is written by four authors – two medical doctors, a city councillor and a writer – but it is a lovely cohesive book that flows naturally. Each writer has written a different chapter, that reflects a family living in one home during the COVID-19 lockdown. Kees has written the chapters on Uman, Nikau and Nana. Manuela, who is in Portugal, wrote the Mum and Dad’s chapters, while Cathy and Alex wrote the chapter on Len the dog, with Cathey also doing the illustrations.
As the lockdown commences, it becomes clear how the lockdown is affecting each family member, including their pets, and spiritual and emotional lessons are learnt along the way, especially from the wise grandmother of this family. The issues the family face go beyond more than COVID, and the book also tackles bullying, anxiety and grief, in a way that will support families in these uncertain times.
This is a special book with a big heart – I’d recommend people get a copy. Opening Little Boxes is a gem of a book, one that will be treasured by all that read it.
It also is a wonderful and appropriate tribute that the book is dedicated to Kee’s mother, who died in The Netherlands, age 99, from COVID-19.
Reviewer: Karen McMillan
Published by Graduate Press