Hester and Sophie

By John Lampen, with illustrations by Rosie Ryder. Independent Publishing Network, 2019. 82 pages. £7.50 or $10/paperback. Recommended for ages 12 and up.

This is the story of 13-year-old Hester, who is missing a friend, Sophie, who has recently died. Hester is a Friend who attends meeting sporadically as she usually attends only when the teen program is held. Hester handles her grief with artwork, writing, and visiting both the grave and her friend’s family. Although the main themes are grief and friendship, this book touches on other topics such as bullying, race, anger, and immigration. Quaker beliefs and worship are incorporated seamlessly into the story. Although it is a British book and readers on this side of the Atlantic might not be familiar with all of the references, I believe there is enough of value here for young Friends to make reading it worthwhile.

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