Name: Amma Take Me To The Golden Temple
Author: Bhakti Mathur
Price: Rs 299
Appropriate for: 8+
While trying to explain the festival of Holi to her two-year-old son, Hong Kong-based Bhakti Mathur was struck by the lack of choice in books on culture for the very young. The resourceful Mathur set up her own publishing house, Anjana Publishing, in 2010, and self-published a series of 11 picture books on Indian festivals, epics and deities for pre-schoolers.
The Amma Tell Me series met with great success, so much so that the 44-year-old has now been signed up by Puffin India for a three-part series, Amma Take Me. Meant for older children, it will look at different religions and their places of worship through the conversations of a mother and her sons, Shiv and Veer, as they travel to each destination.
The first book in the series, that explains the centrality of the Harmandir Sahib complex in Amritsar in Sikhism, is a treat of a read. Mathur has a fine eye for detail and strikes a perfect balance between history, folklore, information and anecdote. Priyankar Gupta’s illustrations, rich in texture and imagination, make the narrative sparkle and makes us eager for the rest of the series.