Sunday, April 2, 2017

Home in the rain by Bob Graham

Rain is grace; rain is the sky condescending to the earth; without rain, there would be no life.
John Updike

I am so happy that Bob Graham has a book listed for our CBCA Awards.  Home in the Rain has been shortlisted in the Picture Book of the Year category.  I love exploring Bob Graham books with our classes and short listing gives me the perfect excuse to include all my favourite titles from his extensive book list.

I have talked about Bob Graham in previous posts

Take a minute to view this little film about Bob Graham.

In this new book Home in the Rain little Francie sets off with mum travelling home from Grandma's house in their old car and driving through torrential rain.  Here is a connection.  Frances was a name Bob used in his book First there was Frances (1985).  Bob also loves to include wild animals in his stories.  In this book you will find rabbits, ducks, a kestrel and a mouse. It reminded me of The Wild (1986). Bob Graham also enjoys exploring the minutiae of life and the things that happen in a short span of time - we saw this in his book How the sun got to Coco's house and also in Vanilla Ice-cream.  In this new book the whole action takes place over just a couple of hours - time it takes to drive home and stop for a little car picnic along the way.

I really like the way Bob Graham gives emotional qualities to the little red car.  My little blue car has these qualities.

"The little red car seemed to muster all of its courage as it waited outside, ready for the road."
"The little car, now full of courage, bumped off down the road, the windows rolled down and wind rushing through."

Bob Graham has won so many important awards.  You can see a list here.  Click here for Walker teacher notes for Home in the Rain.

When we read this book next term we will explore condensation, oil rainbows and also read some picture books about rain including these below.  My friend at Kinderbooks also has some great suggestions for this topic in response to all the rain we have had here recently.

It will also be good to explore some of books about waiting for a new baby such as these :

The quote at the top of this post is taken from the dedication and comes from "A soft night in Shillington" taken from Self-consciousness: Memoirs by John Updike 1989.

Here are extracts reviews you might like to read :

Bob Graham has a magical touch with his books - both with the delicate illustrations, his use of changing perspectives and his beautiful, measured use of just the right words.  Here is the part of the text I love :

"Perhaps it was something unremarkable, not to be seen by strangers passing in the rain. For it was just a mum lost in thought and a small girl dancing."

This is just as special and the famous quote from Max which might be applied to Bob Graham himself :

 ‘Let’s call him a small hero doing quiet deeds. The world needs more of those.’

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