Friday, 15 March 2013

ReadItDaddy's Book of the Week - Week ending 15th March 2013 - "The Cloud" by Hannah Cumming (Child's Play International PLC)

We're going to take you on a pictorial journey for this week's Book of the Week entry - another utter smasher from Hannah Cumming. In "The Cloud" the children in a schoolroom are as happy as can be, painting, drawing, cutting out and busying themselves in all the fantastic ways children do - all except one sad and forlorn newcomer who sits under a dark fuzzy cloud, ever so quietly and almost unnoticed.

The Cloud, a la Charlotte!

She doesn't go unnoticed for long. A little girl with flaxen hair and a sunny disposition (not unlike a certain other little girl with flaxen hair who is "The Boss" of this very book blog) decides to befriend the newcomer and see if she can get her to come out of her shell a bit.

The cloud persists, and through diligence and the most touching dedication, the girls become firm friends.

See how easy it can be, to turn a cloud into a...TREE!

What we loved about this book is the combination of the message that's core to the story, and also the fact that it inspired us to draw some brilliant pictures that are like Hannah's fantastic illustrations.

There's a great bit in the story that we won't spoil for you but if you feel the same way about this utterly charming and sublime book as we do, you'll soon be creating fantastic creatures like these...

A Zebraffe (or a Girebra perhaps?)
(loved this one) a cute Rabbitodile :)
Tricky one this, a Slothelephant!
We had some great conversations about a new girl who has just joined Charlotte's class at school and thanks to the book it was easy to describe how that girl is feeling being new. No cloud above her head, but right now she might like nothing better than to have a little girl come over and make friends with her and draw, paint and play together.

Charlotte's best bit: The children's drawings, including a rather lovely homage to a certain book by Eric Carle perhaps?

Daddy's favourite bit: As we've come to expect from Hannah and indeed from Child's Play, this is a book that's destined to become a modern classic, with the kind of beautifully told and wonderfully conveyed message that the very best of our children's book writing talent seem to make look so effortlessly easy. "The Cloud" should be in everyone's collection.

(Kindly sent to us for review by Child's Play)