By Jessica Sanford
My Extraordinary Mum, written by Dani Vee, is from a little girl’s point of view as she introduces us to her wonderful mum. She explains that her mum has a few quirky behaviours, including trying to “save every living creature she finds” and breakdancing to the radio at the grocery store, not minding who stops to stare. The book shows us a different kind of groove to the daily drop off / pick up / school lunches and cleaning rosters that we might often fall into, such as the duo’s “road trips without a map or destination in mind”. The message that we can get loud and clear from Dani’s fun filled and colourful story is that it’s ok not to be the same as everyone else’s family, it’s ok to be quirky or a bit different and not every day needs to be driven by routine. It’s a gentle nod to individuality, remembering who we are and seizing the moment. The illustrations, by Alexandra Colombo are bright and fun. On every page the mother and daughter are stylish, yet casual, and we’re offered detailed snapshots into their world, including mum’s “drawings all over her skin, a canvas all of her own.”
I enjoyed reading this book to my two. And they liked it too. Both were keen to learn more about the drum circles that happen under the stars passed bedtime! A lovely addition to the children’s bookshelves for sure.
Just as the bestselling worldwide smash hit My Shadow Is Pink challenged tired stereotypes of gender, so does Larrikin House’s new release My EXTRAordinary Mum by debut author and prolific podcaster Dani Vee.
In light of recent events, the conversation about the perceptions of women has never been so important. ‘My EXTRAordinary Mum’ is a fun, feminist and quirky story about a mother who with her daughter reclaims her identity after motherhood. Dani Vee was tired of how mothers are portrayed in books (in fairytales they are dead, missing and evil or they’re the nurturer reigning in the fun!) This mum is fun, engaged and adventurous! She rollerblades, jumps in the water without her swimmers, rock climbs and takes her daughter on adventures without a destination in mind!
Jessica Sanford (AKA Jessica Anscombe) is a librarian and writer living on the Central Coast. She has a passion for literature and writes fiction and non–fiction. Jessica was the winner of the Wyong Writers’ 2021 Short Story Competition and has also been longlisted for the Furious Fiction prize. You can read her short stories on her website jessicasanfordwriter.com. You’ll also find her over on Instagram