On the 10th April 2017 the children of St Joseph and St. Dominic primary schools were treated to a book reading by children’s author Karen E. Rose.

Karen, who has been visiting St. Maarten regularly since 1993, has written two children’s books about the real-life animals on her farm; as well as co-authoring an educational activity book for kids based on the same characters. Karen attended the schools for a reading last year too. On that occasion she read the children her first book “Pixie and Fenway: Unlikely Friends at Two Mountain Farm”.

The book tells the true story of a chicken called Pixie who forms a very unusual friendship. Karen has a small farm in Vermont in the United States, where she raises chickens. Poor Pixie was being picked on by the other chickens and Karen was very worried about her. She decided to house Pixie on the enclosed porch of her farmhouse. There was just one possible problem – the porch was the domain of Fenway, the farm’s enormous 7.7kg house cat. As everyone knows, cats and birds generally don’t get on very well.

Amazingly just the opposite happened; and as time went on Pixie and Fenway became firm friends. Karen told the tale of the heartwarming friendship to her friends; they loved the story and encouraged her to write a book about the pair. The book was published in 2015; and is illustrated by the artwork of children from local schools in Vermont.

This year Karen read the children in St. Maarten her second book “A Sweet Lemon Arrives at Two Mountain Farm". The book tells the story of Lemon, a chicken who was sadly born without eyes. Karen realized that the little blind chick, who was only two days old when she arrived at the farm, would need lots of help and encouragement if she was to survive, and Karen was determined to give her the chance. Lemon went to live on the porch with Pixie and Fenway; and with Karen’s help and the companionship of her new furry and feathered friends she learnt to do all the things a normally sighted chicken does. In no time at all Lemon was repaying Karen by providing lots of eggs. The children enjoyed the story and the chat afterwards about resilience, helping one another and the importance of friendship.

They were delighted to receive bookmarks and Easter treats from Karen at the end of the discussion. Karen is currently writing her third story book in the series and plans to return to St. Maarten next year to read to the school children once again. Her books are available on Amazon.com.

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