Name of Book: Fly Away Home
Author: Eve Bunting
Illustrator: Ronald Himler
Publisher: Clarion Books
Audience: ages 5+
Summary: A small boy and his father live in a busy airport. The story explores some of the problems facing the homelessness as seen through the eyes of a homeless child. Although there is no “and they lived happily ever after” ending, the story does end on a note of hope.
Literary Elements at work in the story:
Setting—a busy airport
Theme—some problems facing the homeless
Point of view—told by a small boy
Perspective on gender/race/culture/economic/ability:
Economic—the homeless are seen as a diverse group
Scripture: Psalm 68:5-6, Romans 8:14-16, Deuteronomy 6:12-13, James 1:27, Proverbs 17:17, Ecclesiastes 4:9-12, Acts 2:44, 1 John 3:16-18
Theology: Community, hope, fatherhood (human) – responsibilities
Faith Talk Questions:
- Why do the homeless at the airport have to be invisible?
- How can we help those who are homeless?
- What other groups of people are “invisible?”
- Why should we “see” those who are “invisible?” How can we “see” them?
- Where is hope? In the book? In your life?
Media Tie-in: View the movie The Pursuit of Happyness (PG-13) for another view of homelessness seen from the point of view of a single parent. Compare and contrast the problems, difficulties, and outcomes faced in Fly Away Home and The Pursuit of Happyness. Be aware that the book is appropriate for younger children for whom the movie may not be appropriate.
Review prepared by Mary Anne Welch, 2008 MDiv graduate of Union-PSCE, Charlotte.
Filed under: Book Reviews, Books written for Grades 1 -3 (Ages 6-8), Faith Questions For...., Older Elementary, Picture Books, Younger Elementary | Tagged: Community, homelessness, justice | Leave a Comment »