by Kate Moetaua
Auckland, New Zealand: Reed Publishing Ltd
This is a story about Nika, a young Kiwi girl, and her Cook Island family. With a Kiwi mum and a Cook Island dad, Nika talks about how special she feels having cousins all over the world. Nika has an extra special relationship with her Papa. In the story she describes the night before a family wedding when all the family stay together at her Papa’s house talking, playing cards and laughing together. In the middle of the night, Nika sneaks out of bed and down into the basement where Papa is busy making his famous donuts for the family. Nika stays up all night, talking with Papa and helping him with his donuts. Papa’s Donuts is a special story about the importance of family and time together. There is emphasis on the multiculturalism of New Zealand.
This book was nominated because it is extremely popular with young children, and emphasises the importance of intergenerational connections. The book was also recommended for the collection because of how the story shows the reader “the daily lives of Pacific families… the flower in the hair, all the grandmas, the busyness… and where they’re all sleeping in the sitting room.”
A New Zealand Curriculum-linked activity for this picture book can be found here.