Dr Selina Tusitala Marsh.
As playful as it is insightful one of Aotearoa’s brightest voices offers a playbook for life.
Dr Selina Tusitala Marsh (Samoa, Tuvalu, England, France), is back again with a third Mophead book but this offering has a unique twist.
A polymath of the truest form, Marsh has long delighted audiences with her stirring performance poetry and more recently dazzled through illustration that tackles big issues with a joyful light.
How can you talk about racism, self-love, and mental strength, in a way that engages young readers and takes older family members along for the ride? Marsh has the answer in the form of Mophead.
Her new book launching on November 9 is titled WOT KNOT YOU GOT? MOPHEAD'S GUIDE TO LIFE that navigates the ‘knots’ that keep us up at night.
“Since Mophead stormed the world in 2020, kids began asking questions addressed to Dr Mophead," says Marsh.
"For the last two years I’ve collected over two and a half thousand questions - scribbled on post-it notes, scrawled on ripped out refill pages, doodled on the back of bits of paper. These original knotty questions are stuck in the book.”
WOT KNOT YOU GOT? MOPHEAD'S GUIDE TO LIFE invites readers to take out their own pens and address their own knots.
Marsh takes eleven representative knotty questions, identifies them as a particular ‘moppy knot’ and creates creative writing and drawing exercises to help kids (and adults) untangle their knots.
Knotty real-life questions from kids activate the book into a deeply ponderous talanoa and provide a glimpse into a new generation:
What do you do if nothing is right – not at home, at school, anywhere?
What if people don’t like me?
What if your own ideas stink?
How do I hug my dad?
Marsh has found a way to honour these anxieties and curiosities with thoughtful care, some of which form part of the cover art as pieces of paper in a knot of black ink reminiscent of Marsh’s signature curly hair, all while working through her own big knot.
“It’s a creative playbook,” says Marsh.
“It’s part memoir – working through my own painful knot with the help of the kids.”
New Mophead book by Selina Tusitala Marsh