Saturday, June 08, 2013

Mommy's New Tattoo

No, don't get all excited, I haven't had a new tattoo (sadly) but I have been reading a rather charming book by that title, by Levi Greenacres.  As you can see by the title spelling, Levi's story is set in America. Described as 'A bedtime story for people' and 'A bed time story you can wear every night' it is a simply written story of a young girl's experience of her mother having her first tattoo. 



The book is a hardback and a lovely size to read together, with a versed rhyming style, perfect to read aloud. The pictures are bright but with the slight washed look of tattoos themselves. The introduction to the book was as enjoyable as the story itself, with fascinating facts about tattoos (such as the fact that tattooing was illegal in Oklahoma until 2006 - a fact so bizarre I actually looked it up to check it was true! it is) and a history as to how the story came to be written. And  some short biographies of the real tattoo artists that feature in the book.

I liked the fact that the main characters in the book were all female, from the daughter, the mother right through to the tattooist and the people that question the wisdom of a tattoo. My own daughter was very taken with the picture of the lady tattooist 'with storms on her arms' (and I loved the description) but we were both slightly disappointed that the girl in the story waits outside and doesn't see the tattoo created, only hearing it. Maybe this is a cultural thing, but here in the UK when I had my tattoo, my daughter (then 5) came too, in fact we took an adult friend and her daughter too! And my lady tattooist, with pale swirled spirals of brown ink on her breasts and cherries on her neck was only too happy to explain everything as it happened, to two enraptured 5 year olds, fascinated by the mingling inks and blood. 

The story does look at why people get tattoos though, and the permanence of the ink, the importance of choosing carefully, of taking time. (Though I think the pain aspect is a little glossed over! a cat scratch? if you have a tiger as a pet maybe!) I think the book would make a great gift for a child with or without inked parents! But would be especially good to prepare a child for the adventure of a tattoo in the family.

It's a great story for those with tattoos to read with children as a discussion but also as a remembrance of tattoos past, my daughter and I enjoyed rereading the story and looking at the pictures, spotting tattoo designs and little details we remembered from 8 years ago when I was inked.

Mainly the book made me long to get another tattoo, though I'm not sure that was Levi's idea!

I'll leave you with Levi's Youtube video and a verse from the book


She showed me how clean her shop was,
and pictures of work she had done.
When I told her I was nervous, she said,
"It only hurts a little, we'll have fun" 

The Book is available to buy in the UK from Bushwood Books at £14.95 with Free postage and Packaging within the UK, and £10.50 EEC Europe, £18.50 Rest of Europe. 
USA residents and rest of the world can buy via the Publisher in the USA. Bushwood Books accept all major credit cards, cheques etc. Check the website for details.

Disclosure:I was sent a complimentary copy of the book for the purpose of reviewing it.

3 comments:

  1. This sounds so good. My daughter was fascinated when I came back with my tattoo, I must admit I never even considered taking her but this sounds perfect for taking the explanation to another level. An interesting idea too, I didn't imagine something like this would exist :)

    Thanks for linking up.

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