Written & Illustrated by:
& David Litchfield
For ages: 4 years & up
- BIPOC Protagonists
- Social-Emotional Learning
Summary: Rain Before Rainbows is filled with lyrical and poetic text with illustrations that are truly resplendent and enticing to the eyes, urging the reader to turn the page. In the story, a young girl and her faithful pet fox are on a journey. They remain unnamed throughout the story, but go through many landscapes that are beautifully rendered to be vast and mystical.
The main message of the story is that we all go through tough times, but there will be good coming. This can be described in may ways, both big and small hardships. We don’t know why the girl and the fox have left the city to flee into nature, but I do think it’s a beautiful story that can be a beautiful conversation starter about resilience and optimism.
The sparse text allows the illustrations to overtake the page, yet pulls in the poetry to match it in a stunning and abstract way. The reader doesn’t know if the pair actually has to fight forest spirits, or if it’s metaphorical. The rhyming text works wonderfully, it seems effortlessly written by renowned author Smriti Prasadam-Halls. Definitely recommend this picture book, especially if you’re in the midst of a poetry unit!
This book was kindly sent by Candlewick Press, but all opinions and decision to review are my own!
Smriti Halls is an award-winning, critically acclaimed children’s author. Since publication of her first picture book in 2012, she has had a U.S. number 1 bestseller and been published in more than 30 languages, from Arabic to Afrikaans and from Catalan to Korean.
With a cast of characters as varied as mischievous monsters and disgruntled geese, she explores relationship and identity; the personal and the political; how it feels to be in your own skin — and in someone else’s. Her books, often fast-paced and funny or lyrical and tender, are always full of hope and heart and speak to the child in all of us. Several of her books have been nominated and shortlisted for national awards. The Little Island (illustrated by Robert Starling) is currently shortlisted for the 2020 Teach Primary Awards and the 2020 Little Rebels Award.
Smriti works extensively with the Bedtime Stories Prison Project, helping parents in prison stay connected with their children at home through stories. She has been interviewed about this work by BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and The Guardian.
Smriti has been a judge for several awards and prizes, including the Stratford Salariya Prize, Faber’s FAB Award and the Booktrust Lifetime Achievement Award. She is currently BookTrust’s Writer in Residence. South Indian by birth, British by nationality and London-loving by heart, Smriti lives near Richmond Park with her husband and their three sons, reading, writing and eating iced buns.
David Litchfield is a multi-award winning illustrator and author represented by the Bright Agency.
David first started to draw when he was very young, creating Star Wars and Indiana Jones ‘mash up’ comics for his older brother and sister. Since then David’s work has appeared in magazines, newspapers, books and on T-shirts. He has also exhibited his illustrations in both solo and group shows in the U.K, Europe and America.
David’s author/illustrator picture books The Bear & The Piano, Grandad’s Secret Giant, The Bear, The Piano, The Dog & The Fiddle, Lights On Cotton Rock’ and The Bear, The Piano & Little Bear’s Concert are out now.
He has also illustrated a number of picture books for authors such as Ross Montgomery, Andy Stanton and Sally Lloyd-Jones as well as book covers for David Almond, Kate Dicamillo, Neil Patrick Harris, Chloe Daykin and many more.
David lives with his family in Bedford, England.