Title: Sarah’s Heavy Heart
Author: Peter Carnavas
Illustrated by: Peter Carnavas
Publisher: New Frontier Publishing
Teacher’s Notes: Teaching Notes by New Frontier Publishing (pdf)
Themes: Supporting one another, compassion, sharing problems, caring, emotions, friendship.
Sarah Knew the heart would always be hers to carry.
She just wished it wasn’t so heavy…
“This story came about when I drew a little picture of a girl carrying a heavy heart on her back. I liked the way the curve of the heart fitted with the curve of the girl’s back. From that image, I then put together a story depicting the burden of a heavy heart, then introduced the girl to somebody who had quite a different problem with his heart. The ending then came together – balance.
Sarah’s story is basically about sharing one’s problems. Children relate to the need to talk about things that make them sad and adults may identify with the search for love and friendship. I often feel like this is a grown-up book disguised as a children’s book.
My favourite moment of making this book was the night I decided to pair Sarah up with her tortoise friend. I had tried other animals – dogs, birds, snails – before it struck me: the burden of the tortoise’s shell parallels the weight of Sarah’s heart.” – Peter Carnavas
Peter Carnavas’ stories and illustrations have quickly found their way into my book shelf, and into my heart and imagination. His whimsical drawing of characters and simple stories with heart and compassion really stick out on the bookshelves of stores full of beautiful Australian children’s books.
Sarah has a heavy heart…
We all know kids who wear their emotions on their sleeves, and many of us know young people who seem weighed down by their emotions sometimes, whether it be a passion and compassion for others, grief, sadness or depression.
These children, these adults are beautiful people who care all too much, who love all too much, who give oh so much and who’s passion and care can inspire us and break our hearts.
Meet Sarah, see her heavy heart, watch her carry it around with her everywhere, se her try and play, bath, go to school and travel with it weighing her down.
Wonder why no one seems to be there offering help to carry it…
Wonder why her heart is so large, how did she get such a heart?
And watch in wonder and joy as she meets someone who’s heart is too small, too light, who needs help to keep his feet on the ground.
And don’t be surprised at all that its the girl with the heavy heart who offers to help the new friend.
And be overjoyed, inspired and touched by the way that the two friends help each other and bind their hearts together.
Loveable, Joyful, Whimsical, Beautiful, Simple…
You’ll fall in love with Sarah and the story too…