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Heaven    by Nicholas Allan order for
by Nicholas Allan
Order:  USA  Can
Red Fox, 2006 (1997)
Hardcover, Softcover
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

In this picture book, Nicholas Allan deals charmingly (and unusually) with the death of a beloved pet dog, while his illustrations inject quirky humor into the sweet story.

It begins, 'Early one morning Lily woke up to find Dill the dog packing.' He tells her that he's going 'Up there' and that she can't come with him, '... not yet'. When she presses, she's told she's not invited. Then (canine) angels show up and give Lily a last five minutes with Dill. The duo argue just like siblings do - Lily views heaven as 'a funfair where all the rides are free and you're never sick once' while to Dill it's a place full of meaty bones and lampposts and 'whiffy things to smell on the ground.'

Finally it's time for farewells. After Dill heads to Heaven, Lily misses him and thinks 'things would never be the same again.' But when she meets, and falls for, a stray puppy, Lily remembers all that Dill told her. Read this delightful picture book with a child who is anxious about the afterlife or has had to face the death of a pet or a loved one. Heaven is natural, comforting, funny, and full of life.

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