I never really understood “wet play” at schools, when the rain comes down and children were kept indoors to play board games and colour in. There’s something completely magical about rainfall, and lucky for us, we were made of skin and stuff that doesn’t dissolve when wet! Sunday Rain explores the fun of rainy day play in the neighbourhood. But this lovely new book, Sunday Rain, is much more than that. Written by Rosie J Pova, illustrated by Amariah Rauscher and published by Lantana Publishing, this glorious book takes examines the true joy in childhood friendships.
I rarely write reviews off the back of a PDF copy, but I’ve been reviewing Lantana publishing’s books for many years now, and know the quality of their publications is exemplary, so when I was asked to write an early release review I was never going to say no. Their books exude light and joy, love and diversity and Sunday Rain most certainly lives up to this.
It’s a rainy Sunday and Elliott is inside in his new home, head in books. Not a bad place to be I think we’d all agree. But when he sees the neighbourhood children all out playing in the fresh puddles and having a great time, he can’t quite work up the courage to go and join in, as tempting as it seems. With a little encouragement from his Mum, he finds the confidence to go outside and be himself. Soon all the children have joined him and he discovers that friendship can make any story even better!!
As a shy child myself and having an abject fear, almost a phobia of the idea of moving anywhere new, I really identified with this book. Being shy, and lacking in confidence is never easy, and can be a real barrier to making friends. Those over thinkers of us, believing that we’ll be bullied, or laughed at or make a fool of ourselves, hold back in avoidance. I eventually learnt to be myself, be weird and wonderful and embrace my quirks, and with that my shyness began to dissipate. Sunday Rain demonstrates that all rather perfectly.
Rosie’s writing here is just lovely, it’s such a sweet and positive story. This is not only a tale of friendship and overcoming shyness, but also a celebration of reading and books, which is careful and quietly weaved into the book. It’s the ideal story to read out loud in a nursery or reception classroom, and a wonderful at home, bedtime read. The writing is full of expression, sounds and voices that children can learn and repeat and join in with!
Amariah’s illustrations are unlike anything I’ve seen from Lantana books before, just adorable, soft watercolour, with a sweetness that exudes from the book. And of course, what Lantana publishing is known for, a range of characters representing all skin colours, and one of the very few picture books showing a mixed race family.
Sunday Rain is a gorgeous book demonstrating perfectly, with understanding and empathy, the importance of gentle encouragement in early years. Of facing fears and stepping outside that comfort zone and the positive effects which result from leaping right into life and right into those glorious, rainy day puddles!
This review was based upon a PDF copy provided by the publisher. The paperback of Sunday Rain is due for release in March 2021 and will be available from all good book shops and libraries.
You can pre-order your copy via my affiliate link below and support me and local bookshops at the same time!
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Thank you for reading this rainy Book Monster review