Taras Celestial Friend
A POP UP / 3D ILLUSTRATED BOOK
MAdE BY AAKASH DOSHI
How clear the skies were on that beautiful summer night! The trees swayed over the toy like houses and a shooting star streaked through the sky. It seemed to be moving closer, growing bigger, getting brighter until suddenly it was a great big ball of fire. It crashed into the ground with a tremendous noise, temporarily blinding the area in a white hot light.
Tara Kumar was a ten-year-old girl who lived in the neighborhood. She rubbed her eyes sleepily, startled by the loud noise and the rapidly fading light outside. She peered out her window into the backyard. The grass was scorched black, and wisps of gray smoke were fading into the night sky.
Tara was scared but like most young children, her curiosity was insatiable. She reached for her stuffed bunny, Roger Rabbi, got off her bed and went down the stairs, and out the back door. She walked over to the burnt patch of grass, and right in the middle was a spherical object made of what appeared to be metal. She got down on her knees to take a closer look, coughing a little from the smoke. As the smoke cleared, she realized that the metal sphere had what appeared to be a seat in the centre, surrounded by colourful little lights and buttons.
Tara reached out for the sphere, eager to take a closer look, when she heard a rustling in the bushes behind her. She stood up, and holding Roger Rabbi closer, she inched towards the bushes. Something glittered behind the dense leaves. She parted the leaves with her free hand to find a little creature looking up at her from the grass. It was nothing like any animal she had ever seen in the picture books her mother read to her every night before bed. The creature appeared frightened, but it did not run away. She dropped Roger Rabbit and moved closer. The creature, whatever it was, moved back in fright until it backed up against the garden fence. “Don’t be scared. I’m Tara,” she said with a smile, stretching her hand out towards the little thing. It reached forward hesitantly, its paw like hand still shivering slightly. Tara took the paw in her hand and led it into the house, chatting the whole time.
Once they were in her room, Tara reached under her bed and pulled out a little cane basket. She folded a blanket into the basket and gestured to the little creature. “Come sleep in your little bed,” she said, climbing into her own bed. “You must be so tired,” she murmured as she fell into a deep and dreamless sleep.
THIS WAY UP
The next morning, Tara woke up earlier than usual. She peeked over her blanket to see the little creature fast asleep in the basket. She tip toed out of her room, and then rushed into the kitchen. Her father is reading the morning paper with a cup of coffee, and her mother is frying eggs for breakfast. “Good morning!” she sang, as she pushed a chair against the kitchen counter and climbed up on it. She pulled down a box of cereal and poured it into a bowl. “Tara, put that cereal away, I’m frying eggs for breakfast,” her mother said. “These aren’t for me! They’re for my new friend,” Tara cried, as she ran out of the kitchen and up the stairs to her bedroom. Mrs Kumar gave her husband a curious look as she left the kitchen. She walked into Tara’s bedroom to find Tara crouched over the cane basket on the floor, talking cheerfully to thin air. “What are you doing Tara? Wash your face and get ready for school,” she said sternly, as she left the room, closing the door behind her.
PUT ON THE
In school that morning, Tara chattered away to her new friend constantly. Twice her teacher interrupted the lesson to ask her who she was talking to, because the desk next to Taraâ€™s was empty. On her way home after school, Tara spotted some older boys from her neighbourhood playing basketball in the park. She makes her way over to them and introduces her new friend. They laugh and tell her to stop bothering them, because they did not know what she was pointing at.
Meanwhile, Mr Kumar had come home early from work. He picked up the newspaper off the kitchen table, and opened the back door, envisioning a quiet evening relaxing in the backyard with his newspaper. He is astonished to find his beautifully maintained lawn scorched black, and a crater in the center. He drops his newspaper and gets down on his knees to inspect the damage. He finds Roger Rabbit stuck in the bushes, and takes it back inside, puzzled over what happened to his backyard.
Mrs Kumar goes upstairs to check if Tara had finished her homework. She opens the door to find her daughter sitting on the floor, deep in conversation, even though there is no one else in the room. She tells Tara that it is dinnertime, and then goes down stairs to talk to her husband. Tara’s teacher had called her from school to tell her about Tara’s strange behavior in class that day, and she feels worried. “She’s too old to have imaginary friends now. We have to do something about this,” she told her husband as she set the table for dinner. Over dinner that evening, Mr and Mrs Kumar ask their daughter why her new friend hasn’t joined them for dinner. “He’s fixing his spaceship,” she said seriously, “It broke when it crashed here last night,” Her parents exchange worried looks, and go back to their meal.
The next morning she wakes up and gets ready for school. As tara goes to the kitchen and sees her parent sitting and having breakfast. She sits down as her plate is kept ready for her and starts enjoying her breakfast. Her parents had set an appointment with a psychiatrist after school. The mother then asks her what is she going to do with her new friend, as she would not be there the whole day, to this she replies that it had gone away from where it had come from but had promised her that it will be back.
So once in a while she goes to her backyard in the night looking up in the sky wondering if it will ever come back.
Its a children's illustrative book. The first half of the book is a pop up and and second half is a 3D book. It’s a story about a 9 year old...