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The Fix-It Man

The Fix-It Man
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Dimity Powell & Nicky Johnston

The Fix-It Man

Dimity Powell & Nicky Johnston

EK Books

Teacher’s Notes available here.


It’s handy having a dad who can fix just about anything. A young girl believes her father is the king of fixing things. But following the death of her mother, she discovers that broken hearts are not as easy to repair as damaged toys and cracked teapots. Together, she and her father find a way to glue back the pieces of her lives. The Fix-It Man is a poignant picture book that explores how a child can cope with the loss of a parent (in this case, the young girl’s mother). Repairing damaged emotions is not as straightforward as gluing a broken kite back together or sewing up a torn toy. And grief affects all members of a family, with each responding in their own way to the loss. By sticking with her father, the young girl is able to strengthen her resilience and ability to cope with one of life’s harshest experiences. The author was encouraged to seek publication for this story after receiving the endorsement of several grief counsellors who work with children and who recognised the need for a book such as this.

Dimity Powell has trekked through many parts of the world and crossed several of its oceans, collecting story ideas along the way. She loves transforming these into kids’ books because, deep down, she’d love to be a kid again. When she’s not writing stories, she’s reviewing books or acting as a Books in Homes role model — or eating her body weight in ice-cream.

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.

SPECIFICATIONS: Hardback | 245 x 255 mm | 32 Pages | 


The Fix-It Man team have so many events lined up this year that we couldn't fit them on this page!
Head over to the EK Books event page to see when Dimity and Nicky will be in your area.


Sally-Anne McCormack, Melbourne-based Child & Adolescent Psychologist and author

"The Fix-It Man is a story that reflects the challenges of losing a loved one, acknowledging that there is a pain which cannot be fixed, but also acknowledging that with love and support, a child can move forward after a major loss.  Many people avoid the topic of death, but in this book it is addressed respectfully and sensitively, and I believe that this will be a wonderful resource for those helping children deal with grief and loss."

Deirdre Hanna, Founder and Board Director - Hopewell Hospice Services Inc. and Paradise Kids.

"Beautifully written and illustrated, The Fix-It Man is a valuable tool for educators, parents, schools and all parents ... Over the past twenty years Paradise Kids has helped children ‘heal the heartache’ through psycho-education about the grief process through art, story-telling, movement, music and literature. We are excited to add this deeply touching story to our resources to help grieving children heal."


The School Librarian, November 2017

'This book is ideal not just for the... classroom, but also for families so that children are helped to come to terms with the death of a loved one'

Big Sister Blogs, November 2017

"... as you continue to revisit this story you’ll take comfort in its healing power. The co-authors crafts are much appreciated in handling the sensitivity of grief and a hurting heart with empathy, tenderness and love". - Click here to view.

Peninsula Kids Magazine, September 2017 

"A young girl believes that her father is the king of fixing things. But, following the death of her mother she discovers that broken hearts are not so easy to repair." - Click here to view.

Boomerang Books, September 2017

"another favourite to share with Dad is the “poignant, perfectly pitched and picture perfect”; The Fix-It Man by Dimity Powell and Nicky Johnston. A deeply significant, achingly heartbreaking and heartwarming tale, all at the same time."

Children's Books Daily, July 2017

"The Fix-It Man is a thoughtful, caring story of a young child dealing with grief and loss."

Geelong Coast Kids, July 2017

"A poignant picture book that explores how a child can cope with loss"Click here to read.

Books, Teacups and Cup Cakes, June 2017

"The FIX-IT Man is not just for kids. It’s for grown-ups too – I believe it reaches out to two, even three generations in the cycle of life, whispering the roles of helping each other through difficult times."

Reading Time, June 2017

"Loss is inevitable but with tools like this story I believe children are empowered to navigate new and difficult life experiences or to relate to others during challenging time"

The Book Chook, May 2017

"Powell tells this gentle story in a way kids will understand. Even quite young children know that not everything can be fixed with glue or sticky tape, and they will gradually gain an understanding that some things can’t be fixed at all...The whole message of the book is pragmatic but positive, poignant and powerful."

Pinerolo Newsletter, May 2017

"Dads are really handy and the loving relationship in this book is well described. Together, the girl and her dad fix everything. Appealing, loving illustrations complete the picture."

School Days Magazine, April 2017

"A lovely book, beautifully illustrated and good story for bonding daughters and dads"

Sunday Telegraph, April 217

“The Fix-It Man is a thoughtful, caring, picture book story exploring how grief and loss affect a young child … This is an important book. It’s hard to discuss grief and loss with a young child. The Fix-It Man provides a way to do that."

Pass It On, March 2017

"This is a truly moving story. Every word is perfect"

Hip Little One, March 2017

"Written with great compassion by Dimity Powell and beautifully illustrated by Nicky Johnston ‘The Fix-It Man’ is a perfect read for families going through a difficult time of grieving”

Disney Princesses Magazine, March 2017

"A beautiful way to talk about loss and grief" 

Gold Coast Bulletin, March 2017

"Compelling Children's Book"

Creative Kids Tales, March 2017

"This story will pull at the heart strings and prompt conversations otherwise hidden beneath broken hearts."

Jnr Bookworms, March 2017

"Teachers agreed this would be a wonderful resource for a child dealing with loss with its gentle approach."

NC Teacher Stuff, March 2017

"Achingly beautiful, The Fix-It Man is a gentle touch that can help children and adults deal with the loss of a loved one … With examples like the patching of a teddy bear starting the mending of two hearts, this book will lead to important discussions about how people move on in a time of loss."

Kid's Book Review, February 2017

"Heartwarming, moving and thoroughly accessible to the very young--this is a book that will soothe the heart of many a reader. When it comes to loss and the possibility of understanding and healing, The Fix-It Man has nailed it." - Click here to read.

In The Good Books, February 2017

"a fantastic book for those wanting to help teach their child about loss."

Boomerang Books, February 2017

"Poignant, perfectly pitched and picture perfect"

The Bottom Shelf, February 2017

"This is a poignant story of loss and one that will resonate with many children who have lost a parent or other loved one.  With its gentle text and soft palette, even though it is sad it is not gloomy because the love between this family oozes from the page and from that, the hope is tangible."

Scholastic, December 2016

"We all think it’s lovely – the way in which death and grief is dealt with is gentle and not overpowering."


The Bookseller, December 2016

“a poignant story of bereavement, this is an excellent starting point for exploring emotions of grief and loss with young children.”


Pearlz Dreaming, April 2017

Feature Article, "How to Launch a Children’s Book About Loss." - Click here to view.

The Peninsula Star, March 2017

Nicky Johnston, illustrator of The Fix-It Man on why she decided to be apart of this great story. Click here to read the interview.

Ultra 106Five, March 2017

Dave from Ultra 106Five sits down to chat with Dimity Powell, author of The Fix-It Man.  Click here to listen in.

Austereo Maryborough Breakfast Show, March 2017

Tune in to Dimity Powell interviewed on the Maryborough Breakfast Show!

ABC Canberra, March 2017

Dimity Powell, author of The Fix-It Man as interviewed by Laura Tchilinguirian on ABC Canberra.

Herald Sun/Leader Community Newspaper, February 2017

"Langwarrin illustrator Nicky Johnston’s book The Fix-It Man helps parents, children deal with loss" - Interview with Nicky Johnston. Click here to read in full.

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