Saying Goodbye to Barkley

From: GBP £8.99

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Olivia and her dog Barkley are inseparable. He’s her sidekick, her partner in crime-fighting — they’re the perfect pair. But then, Barkley dies and Olivia is heartbroken. Gradually, however, she realizes that Barkley wouldn’t want her to be unhappy for the rest of her life. So she comes up with a clever plan to get her happiness back.

Download the Teacher’s Notes Here

SPECIFICATIONS:  Hardback/ Paperback | 245 x 255 mm / 9.5 x 10 inches | 32 pages

Devon Sillett is a former radio producer, turned writer and reviewer. Born in the US, Devon now calls Australia home. She has loved books as long as she can remember — so much so that she even married her husband Matthew in a library! Currently, she teaches in the writing department at the University of Canberra, where she is also a PhD student, researching Australian children’s picture books. If she isn’t writing or reading, you’ll find her playing Lego or hide-and-seek with her two young sons, Jay and Aaron. Her previous titles with EK Books are The Leaky Story and Scaredy Book.

Nicky Johnston is an educator, speaker and author/illustrator of children’s books. She is passionate about promoting emotional resilience in children and raising awareness of mental health issues. Her love of teaching sees her kept busy with school visits and presenting at workshops and conferences. Her previous titles with EK Books are Grandma Forgets, The Fix-It Man and At the End of Holyrood Lane.


Mums At the Table Magazine
“A great book to read to a child struggling with the loss of a beloved pet”

Animania  published by the RSPCA
“This beautiful picture book explores how it feels when your-much loved pets pass away.”

Dog’s Monthly Book Club – Megan Harding Reviews
“The book is short but heartwarming…Nicky’s illustrations are incredibly poignant. Look very closely at the shadows for a familiar figure, because they stay with us – always.” Click here to read in full.

Midwest Book Review
“An original and thoroughly entertaining picture book for children ages 4-7, “Saying Goodbye to Barkley” is an extraordinary and unreservedly recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library collections.” Click here to read in full.

Mamamia review article
“Saying Goodbye to Barkley was written with the hope of inspiring kids to celebrate the lives of their pets as well as to arm them with the tools to move forward and perhaps even welcome a new pet into the family should that day come.” Click here to read in full.

Sunday Telegraph reviewed
“Losing a loved pet is traumatic for a small child. This book will encourage discussion and understanding.”

Pinerolo reviewed
“Losing her beloved sidekick is almost too much for Olivia but then she discovers a solution that he would have approved of. Ultimately a happy story. ”

Hip Little One reviewed
” Often the first heartbreak a child will endure is the death of a much loved family pet. If you’re looking for a helpful tool that will start this conversation look no further, EK Books is here to help with this lovely new book: .” Click here to read in full.

Miss Jenny’s Classroom reviewed.
“So many ways to open up discourse and encourage both Text-to-Self and Text-to-World connections.”

Blue Wolf reviewed
“captured perfectly that unique bond between children and animals and the sadness that is all too real as they discover that even their beloved furry friends eventually must leave.”
Click here to read in full.

Kids Book Review
” This is a book that can be used as an approach to the emotional subject of loss and overcoming grief. It also calls attention to the importance of considering animal shelters when choosing a new or second pet for a child or family. “ Click here to read in full.

Buzz Words Magazine review blog
” This is a tale that anyone who’s lost a family pet can relate to, with themes of dealing with grief and loss, and moving on. It has lovely illustrations by Nicky Johnston.” Click here to read in full.


Dim’s Write Stuff
“as comforting as a puppy’s slurpy kiss” Click here to read more

Bob’s Books Reviewed
“The text is simple and powerful and the illustrations capture the personalities of the dogs, Olivia and the situation. A pleasing story”. Click here to read in full

Just So Stories reviewed
“This is not a story about replacing one pet for another but a beautiful way of describing that eventually we can heal from our losses and find joy in other ways, events and companions. Highly recommended .” Click here to read in full

Additional information

Book Type

Paperback, Hardback

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