Released on March 23, 2022
Rita and the Death tour
Author Sara Beltrame
Illustrator Tommaso Vidus Rosin
- Curiosity and important themes about the concept of life and death.
- Adventure and mystery to reflect on the fears related to the taboo of Death.
- Splendid color illustrations accompany the reading inside the book.
This story begins in the summer, when a family decides to spend their summer vacation parking their rather old Volkswagen in the parking lots of several cemeteries. But what are they going to do there? Couldn’t they go to a campground like everyone else?
Margarida aka Rita is our main character. She is an 11-year-old girl with curly hair. She happily tells us how she managed to catapult her whole family into a curious tourist trip.
When Rita was about 5 years old, she happened to see the first dead person in her life. At that moment, her parents try to “protect” her by talking about classic explanations that are given to children, but she continues to ask many questions about what happened. It seems, however, that the theme of death in her home is totally banished. But Rita has many questions to ask about death. What exactly happens to a person’s body when they die? Is it really true that one is dead when the heart stops beating?
Not even in school books is there a chapter devoted entirely to death. But how come? Untangling such a topic is not easy for our Rita, especially living in a family that brings with it an unresolved grief: the disappearance in unknown circumstances of Amelia, her maternal grandmother, about whom Rita knows absolutely nothing. When the family moves to live in grandmother Amelia’s old house, Rita begins to find a series of clues that slowly lead her to know her. She discovers, for example, that she was a “tanatologist” and that she had a twin sister. She discovers that she saved the life of a person whose heart had stopped for hours. She discovers that she liked adventures and riddles. And she also finds out that, before she disappeared, she was about to embark on a journey she calls “The Route of Exceptions.” Exceptions to what? Answering this question on her own is not easy, but if Nando – her improbable and odd babysitter-philosopher – helps her, everything becomes lighter. Once she has deciphered the itinerary with the help of the whole family who finally understand the importance of healing the wounds of the past, here she goes on a new adventure in which, from the next book, we will see her following in the footsteps of grandmother Amelia and her phantom tour. First stop? Spain.
“Rita and the Death Tour ” is the first illustrated novel in the series of the same name. It is an adventure without magic, without tricks and without deception because, as our heroine points out: “Here we are not in a Harry Potter story or even in the Lord of the Rings saga. Everything here is, absolutely everything, true.”