The Last Leaf

Available November 17th, 2022

Have you ever wondered how a child processes sadness and loneliness after the loss of a loved one? Are there fears and anxieties they never had to deal with before? Do they start questioning their own mortality?

The Last Leaf is an honest, simply told story about the life cycle, as explained through the four seasonal changes and narrated from the perspective of one leaf on a tree. While everybody works through their own emotions and experiences differently, The Last Leaf may help guide both child and adult as they embark on the first steps of their journey to coping, understanding, and healing.

Employing a nature-based parable of life's seasonal changes as viewed by one leaf on a tree, Deborah eloquently writes about a sensitive topic. Quoting from her book, "Season after season, every family changes for different reasons and in different ways," we get to experience the connectivity of our existence, and the ebb and flow of the circle of life. It evokes that integral part of us that is a humble piece of a bigger picture. And it does so without putting limitations on the child's thoughts and feelings; which is so important to the dialogue.

~ Carla Van Walsum, PdD- Heart Based Solutions LLC

Every so often an insightful book shows up on the radar that helps therapists help their patients. Ms. Desser's, "The Last Leaf," is a book that I highly recommend as a part of the healing process for those dealing with grief through the loss of a loved one or while experiencing other types of life transitions. In its brevity, simplicity, and open-endedness, it is the perfect foray into an approachable and honest discussion for young and elderly alike.

~ Shawn Gordon, Therapist- Trinity Harbour



S. Deborah Desser
Writer, Author

Drafting volumes of content, as blog and social media posts became a part of the new norm in marketing, S.Deborah Desser’s writing career took off like a skyrocket. However, for those who know her well, it didn’t come as a surprise when she segued into children’s literature.

A departure from Ms. Desser’s first book, Mumbo Jumbo Poetry and Haiku, (penned under Deborah Desser-Herchan), The Last Leaf addresses a solemn, and somewhat unexplored space in children’s literature, acknowledging many of the feelings experienced during one of life’s most challenging transitions.

Deborah is a transplanted Canadian residing in South Florida, where she teaches a course in spirituality for seniors, and facilitates two creative writing classes. She is a member of the Authors Guild and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

Althéa Botha, Illustrator
Althéa Botha
Artist, Illustrator

A graduate of the Visual Arts Program at the University of Johannesburg, South Africa, Althéa Botha is both a multi-medium artist and children’s book illustrator based in Gauteng, Johannesburg.

In the concrete trenches of open-air spaces, applying colorful designs to walls, up high on scaffolding, and everywhere in between, is where you’ll discover Ms. Botha creating her art. Althéa’s creations are difficult to overlook, as they combine textures, experimental flavorings of color, gouache, and digital stylings that continuously intrigue her audience. Her use of whimsy and innate sense of reading her clients’ minds, has nudged her into the limelight of business owners, authors, and individual art collectors, not to mention students of her art workshops.

Althéa has the heart of an adventurer and is hugely influenced by nature and animals. In her free time, you’ll find her out on trails, hunting, or quickly sketching references as she discovers new plants, creatures, and landscapes. She effortlessly merges wildlife with her love for creating art, making it not only a career that she is passionate about, but a lifestyle.