Reviews Elsewhere – The Strange & Curious Guide to Trauma by Sally Donovan

I came across this review when someone shared it on social media, and it got picked up and passed around a bit. The review is from the Foster Talk page, which is aimed at Foster families and intersects the topics here when we talk about childhood trauma. Ruth Willets shared this about the book, which might be of interest to many of you who have teens and kids who have experienced trauma, or maybe even some young adults who could use some help understanding what trauma does to us.

The characters are fun and help the reader understand what some difficult science about our brains and bodies can be. The book is aimed at 8–12-year-old children, but with an adult’s help could be understood by younger children. Teenagers would also enjoy reading this entertaining story – I’m very old (and creaky sometimes) and I was smiling and high-fiving Ordinary Jo all the way through – go Jo!

The book is small enough to read in bite-size chunks at the child’s pace, as it is broken down into 15 chapters in just under 100 pages – or to devour in one longer sitting depending on the child’s interest or ability to absorb the information. Young people who have experienced trauma and their carers will benefit from positive and realistic messages in this book, both emotionally and practically, when they are overwhelmed and need a reminder that trauma is not their fault or that they are incredibly strong individuals.

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