The Camberwell Society

Society for those living, working or interested in Camberwell

Age, nature, kindness, and fun too


Ros Tabor reviews A Robin Called Ruben by Mark and Louise Baxter

This delightful book by local authors Mark and Louse Baxter, tells the tale of a robin called Ruben who lives in Camberwell Green. Every day he has his breakfast with the same old lady, Jeannie, who lives nearby. She feeds him every day and then suddenly she is not around.

Ruben is worried and so decides to try and find her. His journey cleverly introduces the different characters who make up the local neighbourhood. He chats to each person and when they tell him their problems, he wishes them good luck and happy memories in exchange for something to eat.

Eventually he discovers that Jeannie has moved to a care home near London Bridge and he starts to visit her there. We are left with the hope that their special relationship will last a bit longer.

The book is written to be read to young children and explains in a gentle way that old people may have to leave their homes and go into care. Reassuringly, Jeannie is shown as happy in her new home, able to recognise Ruben and enjoy chatting to him.

The story is set in Camberwell, and the descriptions are accurate and humorous. But the diverse neighbourhood is similar to many inner-city areas and the book’s themes are universal: age, nature, kindness, caring and hope. It would help a young child whose elderly relatives or carers are becoming more frail. Dementia is not named, but the book is dedicated to sufferers of that condition.

Very young children will enjoy the bright clear illustrations and would be able to pick out the robin on each page. Much fun could also be had tasting the various snacks that the robin enjoys.

£10 from Proceeds to the Alzheimer’s Society.

Main photo: Southwark News

Follow us on Facebook

and Instagram Instagram

The Camberwell Society was formed in 1970 and is the recognised amenity society for those living, working or interested in Camberwell.

The Society’s objectives, as defined by our constitution, are: to stimulate public interest in Camberwell, to promote high standards of planning and architecture in Camberwell, and to secure the preservation, protection, development and improvement of features of historic or public interest in Camberwell.

We are a charity and raise money for local charities. In the past we have raised money for Southside Rehabilitation Association, St Giles Trust, Cambridge House, the CamberwellCommunity Choir, the HollingtonYouth Centre and the Camberwell Arts Festival