Zak and His Little Lies
Author: J.SAmia Mair
Illustrator: Omar Burgess
Zak is on his final warning. If he tells one more lie, however little, he won’t be going to the skate park with Baba and Hana. With one job left to do, what could go wrong?
Nothing in the earth and in the heavens is hidden from Allah (Surah Al Imran 3:5)
Recently I have picked up on Bee telling small lies so the opportunity to review this book came at exactly the right time. With lying there is always the issue that if it is small do we just let it slide? But then if you leave it will it then turn into bigger lies?
A book focusing on lying, the potential consequences and then backed up by Quran and hadith….all written in a fun way….is what is needed. And this is what Zak and His Little Lies tries to cover.
Zak gets caught telling a lie and he has to get through the rest of the day without telling a lie. Sounds pretty easy right? However a number of mishaps during the day, leads to him telling a few more lies but ultimately shows him that telling the truth is better and makes you feel great.
What did we think?
The book is recommended for ages 5+ so perfect for Bee. However it is not one that she can read herself yet so we read it as a bed time story.
She enjoyed listening to the story and realised that Zak telling lies led to more problems for him. The language was simple enough for her to follow although I did have to explain what a ‘terrarium’ was and also was quite surprised at the use of a ballet term to describe a jump: Grand Jete……which I then had to google to explain what that jump actually was. Unless you are into ballet it is highly unlikely children will know what the term means….but it does make a starting point for a different conversation!
Zak also seems to be picked on by two boys who tease him at school….and he lies to them as if he told the truth they would tease him. I would actually like to see books showing children standing up to the bullies and telling the truth, but as this is a book which is specific about lies it can become a focal point for the children to teach them that they should not feel the need to lie to other children to prevent being teased.
We loved the illustrations in the book. There are illustrations on each page which are very appealing to the eye and do not dominate the page. The story feels more interesting when you have the images mixed up into the text.
What I liked in particular was that at the end of the book a few questions are asked to get a discussion going. For example:
Sometimes lying might feel like the right thing to do at the time, but it isn’t. If you are about to lie, what can you do to stop yourself?
In addition to the questions, the Quran and Hadith that are mentioned in the story are written in full on the final page. This is useful to help teach the kids about lying and reinforces that lying is wrong.
Do you like the sound of Zak and His Little Lies? If so it is available from Kube Publishing for £4.99 (plus P&P).
Disclosure: We were sent a copy of Zak and His Little Lies for the purposes of review. However all thoughts and opinions are our own.