#whenthemoonisasmile #blogtour #booksontourpr #day2

When the Moon is a Smile, Teena Raffa-Mulligan (author), Amy Calautti (illus.), Daisy Lane Publishing, June 2019.


“Don’t go, Daddy!”

It’s the plea that tugs at the heart of every loving father whose child no longer shares his everyday life due to a relationship break-down.

For a young child, accepting how things have changed once parents live apart can be difficult.

When ‘Daddy time’ is occasional instead of constant, saying good-bye for now can be the hardest part of spending time together.

In this gentle story about the special bond between a little girl and her father, the fun of sharing a day imagining everyday activities into extraordinary adventures turns to sadness when it is time for him to leave.

Tears turn to acceptance with the promise that Daddy will soon return – and there is a special way to know when that will be.

A heart-warming family story from the author of Who Dresses God?, True Blue Amigos and Friends.


A tender story to lovingly gaze over with the special people in your life.

When the Moon is a Smile takes its young readers on an astronomically heart-warming and thoughtful journey. Its gentle yet fun-loving tale gives children both a charming and strategic approach to dealing with difficult circumstances – in this case, the break-down of the traditional family unit.

Teena Raffa-Mulligan has taken inspiration from her own grandson’s observations of the moon, and turned his concept of ‘a smile’ into a meaningful and sensitive story of the special bond between father and daughter during their occasional visit. No doubt, extraordinarily exciting and imagined adventures with Daddy would ideally last forever. But for this little girl, her parents’ separation means time with Daddy is only short-lived…for now. Raffa-Mulligan beautifully ties in emotions of sadness, longing and displacement, but also of hope and promise that make this book so uplifting. Daddy makes sure his presence continues to remain in his little girl’s heart and that the adventures carry on (by observing the moon’s changing shape each night) until they can be together again.  

Amy Calautti debuts her talents with her beautiful representations of life, colour and joy in the happy moments, and the more subdued, blue hues in those times of worry and comforting. Her watercolour and line paintings exude energy and innocence, and a softness that perfectly matches the affectionate tone of the story.

When the Moon is a Smile is a book of value, of trust and of courage that children in similar circumstances can utilise as their bright and shining light, providing them the security to know they are loved whether near or far. And this family story will certainly be loved by all…all the way to the moon and back!

Review by Romi Sharp.

#picturebook #family #separation #relationships #love

Special bonds ought to be shared…

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‘Have you seen the moon smile?’

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4 thoughts to “#BookReview: When the Moon is a Smile by Teena Raffa-Mulligan and Amy Calautti

  • Norah

    This sounds like a lovely book. I’ve entered the contest.

    • Just Write For Kids

      Thanks, Norah. I haven’t seen your entry come through. Is it ok to try the form again? Thanks! 🙂 x

      • Norah

        Sure, Romi. Thanks. I’ll give it a go. 🙂

    • intheirownwrite

      Good luck, Norah.


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