How did this book end up on my bookshelf?
I’ve lived in London for a year now. English bookshops, with waxed floors and comfortable sofas, are full of beautiful books. However, I haven’t quite mastered the language of Shakespeare yet, unlike my two little boys. Thus I prefer reading something in French as a bedtime story, for example something by Molière. Instead of strolling through old Parisian bookshops, I spend my time browsing the online bookshops of big department stores. Mon Amour was top of the chart. One click and a day later I had it in my hands.
My first impressions.
Upon first inspection, Mon Amour is a nice little book. The simple illustrations and the reduced choice of colours force the eye to focus on what is important: the love of a mother for her child. We only see two characters: Archibald, a five year-old little boy and his mother. The story begins at bed time. When saying good night, the little boy asks his mother if she will love him for the rest of his life.
The rest of the book is the answer. Each double page explains to Archibald, in a game of opposites, how vast her love is for him. In the book we can read “I love you when I think about you” as well as “and when I forget you”. Or “I love you when you are close to me” as well as “and when you’re far from me”. Dozens of daily situations are shown in these pages.
When I read the ending.
By the end I had two quiet little boys next to me, contemplative and serene. We’re mothers, and the love we have for our children is evident. It is intense, unconditional and absolute. However, our sons and daughters don’t realize the depth of this feeling. They don’t know how much they are loved. The scenes in this book portray the variety of mad emotions we can experience in a day: anger, frustration, sadness, fatigue and fear. Each of these emotions is brushed away by love. And it’s good to remind our children of this!
Mon amour is a book which tells a story, explains itself and unites people. These pages are to be read over and over again, and many of the sentences will stick with you due to their incredible profoundness.
Mon Amour by Astrid Desbordes and Pauline Martin, from Albin Michel, 9,90€