Did you know that otters hold hands? Yes, even though that sounds much too adorable to be true, it’s a fact. And in Emma Dodd’s Together, a sweet story of a parent and child, these otters spend a whole day enjoying their calm, dreamy river but most importantly, enjoying it together, hand in hand.
Laced with silver foil, the illustrations genuinely shimmer on the page, betraying a wealth of color and movement with a few simple inlays. Couplets spanning two pages tell a story of unique companionship and joy. Dodd’s story is a heartwarming testament to presence during the quiet days of nothingness. The otters have an uneventful day, swimming in their river home, watching the sun rise and set. At the end of the day, they fall asleep much like they woke up, cuddled together.
This book’s strengths are its universality and simple message. Neither otter is gendered or aged so the book has boundless potential. It could be a book of bonding for any kind of parental dynamic, but it doesn’t stop there. It could also apply to grandparents, godparents, aunts and uncles, nannies– it’s just about the magic of being around a special little one that you love. Dodd focuses on the value of everyday boring adventures, encouraging a mindful consideration of presence in a child’s life as an important and vital part of caring for their wellbeing.
Plus, what could be cuter than two otters, sleeping, floating, and holding hands?