Window                      Jeannie Baker


Jeannie Baker creates lovely collages to tell stories about relationships, and community and, above all, the environment. Like many of her books, Window is wordless and so it opens it up to the imagination and talk, and to readers of all ages. The reader looks out of the window to the Australian bush that surrounds a house. In the first double page spread we look over the shoulder of a mother holding a new born baby. The passing of time and the changes to the environment are seen alongside the growing boy. There are clues to his life on the windowsill and in the garden, until he finally leaves and we see him look out on to unspoilt bush with his own baby on his shoulder.

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The environment beyond the garden changes year by year and gives us the chance to think about how we are taking over the land and the ways in which urban life is changing. There is much to pore over. The reader can think about how the boy is growing up and what is happening in the neighbourhood. A child reading alone may well look at the pages in the same way as we look at a spot the difference puzzle, but readers looking at it together will have much to talk about. As there are no words, we can create our own stories. I never tire of looking at this beautiful book and always see something new. Look out also for a similar narrative called Belonging.