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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
“When you look at the images of protests going on in a number of countries, you see young people leading the way. They’re demanding not just change, but attention and action.” Those are the well-formulated thoughts of Ariella Abad, age 12. She and her sister have annotated and assisted their father, Robert Abad, in his testament to youth, his photo collage of children in third-world countries. His book, Moment, is a compelling insight into the world out there, all of it, good and the not-so-good. The purpose of this photo collage is to introduce young people to a world beyond their perimeters, to make them “think outside the box.”
Too often young people are trapped in a stereotypical view of the world. We’re all guilty of that, actually seeing what is closest and dearest to us, but not venturing further beyond. Robert Abad’s photographs take the reader/viewer deeper into the esthetics and reality of the world as a whole. Photographs of children playing games we take for granted using only what they can find as equipment, using space littered with debris and who-knows-what-else. The author has accompanied these photos with quotes from famous thinkers from around the world. l like Salman Rushdie’s quote, “The only people who see the whole picture are the ones who step out of the frame.” And, Jorge Luis Borges’ quote, which certainly defines this book’s title, “Any life is made up of a single moment; the moment in which a man finds out, once and for all, who he is.” He also included some anonymous well-known sayings, like “Never lose your sense of wonder.” The result is a powerful, very thorough, thought-provoking book to study and appreciate, something to hopefully inspire young people to reach out, explore, be adventurous, to understand what is out there. And, yes, with photographs and quotations like this, the book can still be a fascinating coffee table book, one to open up multiple avenues of discussion amongst family and friends.