Book Review: The Useful Book My review of this new activity, recipe and art/craft book celebrating…
Home in the Rain – Book Review
A beautiful new picture book by Bob Graham, published by Walker Books.
Also available on Book Depository: Home in the Rain
Also by this author:
And many more.
In the pouring rain, Francie and her mother and her soon-to-be-born sister say goodbye to Francie’s grandmother and set out on the long drive home, in the pouring rain. It’s a very ordinary drive in the rain, passing dripping wet pedestrians and roaring, splashing big rigs. They stop for a while to have a picnic and draw on the fogged up windows and talk about finding the perfect name for the new baby. While filling up with petrol, they have a sudden moment, ordinary and unremarkable on the outside, but significant to the little family unit – and the baby’s name is revealed.
This is a picture book for older children, around four to eight, about the magic to be found in the everyday events of children’s lives.
The pictures are beautiful, full of interesting characters and details, inviting a second and third look. The story beautifully captures the nature of a rainy drive home which most adults would see as a chore to be completed as soon as possible, but which, for children, is full of new sights, sounds and opportunities to let your mind open up and go exploring.
Like many of Bob Graham’s books, this one seems extremely simple at first. But its beauty is in the way he allows children to relate to their own world and use their imagination. He has a true insight into the fascination for tiny moments and details that children have.
An additional pro is the diversity of the characters in the story. The main characters are dark haired and skinned and they are a family with a long distance parent (the father works away at sea for weeks at a time). It’s lovely to see more variations of families in picture books, to echo the world of today’s children.
Don’t try this book on children younger than four, unless they are seriously advanced in their thinking. It doesn’t work for children who aren’t ready for the concentration and the detail that this book provides, and you will miss the magic of the story.
Apart from this warning, I have no criticisms to make.
Our Rating (channelling our love of ice cream, our rating system works the way we like our ice cream: the more scoops the better. Besides, good books should be devoured!
Best = four scoops):
Four scoops! Can’t talk, busy eating!
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