Publication date: 31 May, 2018
In Juleus Ghunta’s, Tata and the Big Bad Bull, children will be taken on a wonderful journey through a Caribbean island with Tata, a young boy whose only wish is to get to school. Tata, who “loves school more than sweets or play,” must overcome several obstacles such as his lack of money to pay his fare on a bus that could have taken him safely to school.
When his Grandma Jean laments, “I have no money. We are poor, too poor,” Tata comes up with a solution. He will cross Pellken Pasture, which is guarded by a terrifying bull. His grandmother, of course, becomes worried for her grandson and cries, “The big bad bull is much too mean.” Yet, Tata will not give up until he finds a way.
After overcoming his fears, Tata’s initial attempt to cross Pellken Pasture fails. Undaunted, Tata enlists the help of allies, some of whom turn out to be tricksters. Nevertheless, Tata remains determined in his quest to go to school.
Beautifully illustrated by Ann-Catherine Loo and written in loose verse, young readers from the Caribbean will not only learn about prepositions and other age appropriate language skills, they will be introduced to young hero who resembles them. In this delightful tale, they will also learn that any obstacle may be overcome by using their minds and that perseverance is a gift in itself.
Geoffrey Philp, author of Garvey’s Ghost