Paati’s Rasam is a picture book, written by the mother-daughter duo Janaki Sabesh and Dhwani Sabesh, and illustrated by Pallavi Jain. It follows the story of Malli, a little girl who loves her grandmother, and explores the transitory nature of life, and the impact it leaves behind.
Through emotive language, and relatable references, this book dissects complex concepts like grief and healing, recognizing the validity of these emotions even at a young age. We see how Malli is affected by her Paati’s absence, and how she fears losing the relationship and love they once had. We also understand that people pass away, but their impact and memory lives on.
The easy-to-follow storyline and uniquely characteristic illustration style makes it easy for young readers to enjoy and place themselves in Malli’s world. The language, sentence length, and illustration- all match Malli’s mood, helping the reader draw connections between the character and their surroundings. Additionally, the book emphasizes the nuanced nature of complex emotions.
Paati’s Rasam is the perfect book to introduce children to ‘difficult’ concepts and help them understand the significance of emotions and their impact. This book encouraged me to look past immediate loss, and find the beauty in eternal memory, using the paati’s rasam as a perfect example.