Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Book Review: The Tiny Portrait by Heidi Carla, Illus. by Karla Cinquanta

Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this book, free of charge, from the Cadence Group, , for review purposes on this blog. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it

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With Thanksgiving and Native American Month, it only makes sense that November is also National Heritage Month!

Today I have a great kids book, that is perfect for introducing your kids to genealogy and their heritage!

 The Tiny Portrait cover


The story begins when siblings Tess and Toby discover a tiny tintype portrait of an unknown female ancestor in the family¹s Memory Box. Intrigued by the antique photograph, they remove it from the box. Over the course of an evening, the bright image of the photograph inexplicably fades away. The children fear that it¹s forever lost. They set off on an adventure ­ both real and imagined, seeking clues to her identity. Along the way, they are introduced to genealogy, antiques and early photography. The story ends at the start of a new journey ­ a journey of self-discovery for the children when they begin their own family tree project.

 The Tiny Portrait  sample 1

The Tiny Portrait underscores the theme that a ³treasured object² is not held in the eye so much as in the heart of the beholder. Another valuable message is that in learning about our family history, we learn more about ourselves. The reader discovers that Tess and her mother share an inherited gift of imagination. This book encourages children to explore connections within their own families.

 The Tiny Portrait  sample 2


This is a wonderful kids book about sharing our family heritage, and getting to know our ancestors, and their lives, through mementos we hold on to. It's a charming book and I'd recommend it for the 6-10 crowd, as they are the ones most interested in secret treasure and finding out the stories behind them. Uncovering mysteries is half the fun of working on your family's genealogy, and this is a great way to get your kids interested in the work you might be doing. If not, this book is a great way to get started with your kids on finding out about your family tree. It would be a wonderful gift to give with a starting genealogy package and a special box or trunk, to start a family memory box with. 

About the Author:

Heidi Carla wrote The Tiny Portrait while researching her own family tree.  This is her first book for children.  She has written plays that have been produced for stage and radio, and have  appeared in several books and drama  journals.  She lives in Rhode Island.

About the Illustrator:

Karla is an award-winning photographer who is known for her ability to alter photographic images in ways that make them appear to be very old. 

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