Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Children's Fiction Africa

Gift Days

by (author) Kari-Lynn Winters

illustrated by Stephen Taylor

Fitzhenry and Whiteside
Initial publish date
Oct 2012
Africa, Siblings, Books & Libraries
Recommended Age
6 to 9
Recommended Grade
1 to 4
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2012
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it


Young Nassali longs to read and write like her brother, but since her mother's death, Nassali is responsible for looking after her younger siblings and running the household. There is no time for books and learning. Then one day, she wakes up to discover that her chores have been taken care of. It is her first gift day. From that day on, once a week, her brother gives Nassali the gift of time so that she can pursue her dream of an education, just as her mother would have wanted.

About the authors

Kari-Lynn Winters is the author of Jeffrey and Sloth (2007), a picture book about the daunting task of overcoming writer's block, and The Meaning Maker, a children's play about reading strategies which is currently being toured throughout the Lower Mainland. A graduate of Canada's National Theatre School, she is currently performing with a Vancouver children's theatre group, The Tickle Trunk Players.

Kari has taught a range of students in Canada and the United States, including pre-school, special education, primary, intermediate, high school, and now university teacher education.

She is currently completing her Ph.D. in the Language and Literacy Department at UBC. Her research interests are children's literature, print literacy, and multimodal forms of learning.

Kari's website is

Kari-Lynn Winters' profile page

During his twenty-five years of practice as an herbalist, Stephen Taylor has explored the traditional foundations of Western medicine, drawing inspiration from the ancient herbalists Hippocrates and Galen, and the medieval herbalist Nicholas Culpeper. While exploring the surviving folk traditions of Europe, he has also trained in Eastern and African traditions of ancient medicine. Having made extensive visits to learn from the traditional healers of Africa, he eventually became initiated as a traditional healer and diviner himself. He continues to practice herbal medicine, teach, and research, and he grows and produces many of his own medicines.

Stephen Taylor's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"The gauzy artwork reminiscent of the work of Floyd Cooper, captures busy village life, but more often, the solitary moments, where Nassali can do no more than hug a book to her, hoping to somehow bring its knowledge inside her. The final informative spread, with photos, explains what life is like for Ugandan children trying to get an education."

"The straightforward narrative, using a select number of Lugandan words, offers a window into the contemporary rural culture of Uganda (including the Nassali's child-like reference to "the [clearly fair-skinned researchers who came from far away and always wrote on the whitest paper"). . . Stephen Taylor, a seasoned book illustrator, places solid human figures in colourful modern dress against a sepia background. . . For the subject matter alone, this book belongs in all primary school and public library collections."
CM Magazine

Other titles by

Other titles by

Related lists