Book encourages youngsters to follow their dreams – Scoop

As self-belief books go, this one carries special messages not only for young readers. It’s also a metaphor for the author’s struggle to be true to herself, to find a channel for her creativity and in turn connect with and empower others.

‘Who said Kiwis can’t fly?’ written and illustrated by Lisa Hamilton-Gibbs is a 100 per cent New Zealand-made book for children that chronicles the challenges and adventures of Herb, a kiwi bird.

From a young age Herb has always dreamed of flying. With the encouragement of his best friend Lola the ladybird, he embarks on a pilgrimage to learn how.

Despite both encouragement and pessimism from friends he meets along the way, Herb does take to the air on wings built from the toe toe plant.

With sheer determination, self-belief and Kiwi ingenuity he manages to circumnavigate the globe – just like Santa – and becomes an overnight sensation.

Lisa Hamilton-Gibbs says the story’s missive is about believing in yourself with the underlying message of encouraging youngsters to follow their dreams.

“It’s written as a book to inspire and motivate or at least plant the seed of self-belief in little kids,” she says. “But it’s also about acknowledging our strength as a nation. In spite of our small size relative to the rest of the world we punch far above our weight and we have so many success stories that have emerged from this little country.

“In a way, it’s also like the 15 years of owning my own business wrapped up in this kids’ book – my own journey of the struggle associated with believing in yourself, going against the main flow and following your heart,” Hamilton-Gibbs says.

“You can be anything you want, you only have to try. Herb trusted his heart, believed in his dream and became an inspiration to fellow animal friends all around the world.”

Written in cross rhyme, ‘Who said Kiwis can’t fly?’ highlights New Zealand flora and fauna in a unique and educational way and is intrinsically Kiwi. It is a mixed media combination of illustration and real world imagery while Herb himself is rendered in a gold colour giving the story a true contemporary feel.

It’s the first children’s book from icandy founder Hamilton-Gibbs who composed the storyline during a 40 minute walk along the coastline around Mangawhai’s spectacular Bream Tail Peninsular.

‘Who said Kiwis can’t fly?’ launches on 15 April, 2016 and includes a bonus pull out poster that can be used as inspirational artwork on a child’s bedroom wall.

RRP$19.99, published by icandy and available for purchase online and at book stores and gift stores nationwide. More atwww.icandy.co.nz/books

If you’d like to know about the New Zealand kiwi, please visit http://www.doc.govt.nz/nature/native-animals/birds/birds-a-z/kiwi/ (but don’t believe them when they say kiwis can’t fly).

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