Olu & Greta

Olu and Greta cover
Olu & Greta by Diana Ejaita

By Diana Ejaita
Rise/Penguin Workshop, 2022
32 pages

Ages 4-8

Olu lives near Lagos, in Nigeria; Greta lives in Milan, in Italy. The two children (both Black) are cousins. “They have never met each other in person! How would they?” A playful narrative paired with pencil and digital illustrations that look like chalk-on-blackboard distinguish a beguiling picture book about two children who have a close bond, and a lot in common, despite the distance between them. They can’t get to one another by walking, or skating, or parade, or spaceship, or dancing, notes the text in a series of page spreads showing the two children separately engaged in each of these activities on side-by-side pages. “Could they get there by car? By boat? By plane? YES! But not today.” Instead the cousins “send pieces of their lives to one another” (boxes in the mail). They talk to each other (on computer). They dream of adventures (together in their imaginations). A satisfying wordless page spread at the end of this singular, captivating story shows now-teenage Olu and Greta with arms around one another…at last!  ©2022 Cooperative Children’s Book Center