Ladysmith author and illustrator Brittany Leonard co-wrote and published The Life of a Shadow with her father Mel Leonard. (Cole Schisler photo)

Ladysmith author and illustrator Brittany Leonard co-wrote and published The Life of a Shadow with her father Mel Leonard. (Cole Schisler photo)

Local author publishes new children’s book: The Life of a Shadow

Brittany Leonard collaborated with her father Mel to bring a childhood bedtime story to life

Ladysmith author and illustrator Brittany Leonard has published a new book The Life of a Shadow, which she co-wrote with her father Mel.

The Life of a Shadow is a children’s book aimed at readers aged 10 and under but it can be enjoyed by readers of all ages. Leonard said she got the idea for the book from a bedtime story that her father used to tell her while she was growing up about why people have shadows.

“The idea behind it was that shadows are made of love so no matter where you go or what you do you’re never alone,” she said.

Her father suffers from chronic health conditions, so Leonard found the message of the story comforting through her childhood and into her adult years. But Leonard isn’t the only person who found the story enjoyable.

“He told the story to a couple of friends and they told him he had to publish it, but he didn’t know how to go about finding an illustrator and going through the publishing process,” Leonard said.

The COVID-19 pandemic provided an opportunity for Leonard and her father to work on the book together. Although Mel lives in Ontario, the two have collaborated on the book via video calls.

The book also includes instructions on the back for readers to learn how to make their own shadow puppets.

The Life of a Shadow is available online through Amazon or www.authorbrittanyleonard.com for $13.99. Leonard is working to get her book sold in local bookstores on Vancouver Island.

Coming up in August, Leonard will be at the Great Canadian Dollar Store at Chemainus Village Square for a book signing and back to school bundles which include a signed copy of The Life of a Shadow. Leonard will be at the Great Canadian Dollar Store from 3 pm to 6 pm on Friday August 27, and 9 am to 12 pm on August 28 and 29.