carnival rain


What’s a review carnival?

EBYR Reviewers are always hard at work churning out thoughtful critiques of our latest titles. The EBYR Review carnival features their work and lets you take a closer look at what people are saying about our books.

We invite you to read the condensed reviews below and if any catch your interest, we’ve provided links to their full review on Amazon or the reviewer’s personal blog.

And yes, we know, we know, nothing puts a dampener on your high-floating fun-filled day at the fair like rain. But we’ve got you covered with some ideas that are sure to soak up your soggy day and make it a big splash.

With that in mind, let’s see what our reviewers have to say about Rain.

What the EBYR Reviewers are saying . . . 

Deb Nance kicks off our Rain reviews with some strong notes about author and medium: “Haiku is a small but perfect way to capture life in words, and Anders Holmer is a master of both haiku and haiku illustrations. In just a few syllables, Holmer’s Rain uses haiku to share both the hope of life and its inevitable destruction.”

eat cc
Rainy day tip #1: EAT – Sure carnival food isn’t exactly healthy, but that’s why you save it for that trip to the fair. Don’t worry, what happens at the fair stays at the fair. So if you get a downpour instead of a Tilt-a-Whirl, go ahead and douse those cravings with a sugar and salt immersion. Just don’t get on that Tilt-A-Whirl if the sun comes out. 

SB insightfully expands the reader’s engagement: “Rain is ubiquitous in every climate, including desert zones. It offers a common thread among all human experience. The emotional journeys of these scenes also have a commonality to them, with each double spread revealing relationships, struggles, and suggesting open-ended resolutions. Independent writers could well imagine a story from each of the twelve spreads, guided by the haiku text, and then harvest details from images on the page while imagining a before and after related to the scene. . . Rain is a human experience, as are its consequences (floods, droughts, crops, famine, dismay, delight). It is a resource and a necessity. After reading and re-reading this haiku collection, many times over . . . I’m convinced the same can be said about this new picture book, RAIN. For your own reading and for young readers of any age, make it a point to get and share this book. Return to it often. It is both a resource and a necessity.”

And Dietrich Cooper takes us a bit deeper into the Rain’s poetry . . . “Holmer’s poems seem to be good examples of what [haiku] can accomplish. They contain the common elements of English-language haiku. There is a cut between two juxtaposed elements within the seventeen syllables of each three-line poem. Unencumbered by rhyme or other complexities, the poems capture fleeting moments in nature and allow you to live in them for just a while. This book would be a useful resource for anyone interested in teaching budding young poets about haiku. It would also be good for anyone, young or old, who just likes beautiful picture books.”

Similarly, Wendy BooydeGraaff takes a closer look at Rain’s art noting“The illustrations are what stand out in Anders Holmer’s RAIN. Even the endpapers show a subtle blend of rain with varying sized drops and drizzles. Each double-page spread features one haiku and one expansive scene from various places around the world where it is raining: mountain goats on hilltops, a treehouse lookout over forest fires, a boat in the swamp forest, a band playing in a train crossing a trestle bridge. These unique places to live and work are fascinating, and the author/illustrator’s imagination is on display for all of us to enjoy. Rain, too, looks different, depending on where it falls and in what form it falls.”

Rainy Day tip #2: PETTING ZOO – If there’s an indoor petting zoo be sure to take advantage of it—especially if there’s a disappointment in the air. The petting zoo will refocus your kid’s mind and take them into a whole new world of wonder. You might even get to milk a goat. EXTRA TIP: Quickly glance over the petting zoo to ensure that it’s been kept tidy and clean.

And Joyce Igel draws verse and art together . . . “Haiku verses accompany twelve restful scenes depicting rain in its many forms in a variety of natural settings, allowing a glimpse into other cultures. Exceptional visual imagery is created with descriptive word choices showcasing the subtle action in each scene while leaving the reader with hints of questions. Stunning illustrations delicately etched with minute detail glide over each double-page spread, adding to the depth of the author’s carefully chosen words. This picture book quiets the soul with peaceful verse and takes the reader on a sensory journey through new worlds.”

In her no-nonsense style, Cathy Morton boldly expounds:Rain . . . is as refreshing as a rainstorm” and “envision[s] children poring over the detailed paintings finding familiar childhood activities and being introduced to a variety of cultures.” She continues, “As a former kindergarten and 2nd-grade teacher . . . [I] immediately saw applications for the classroom or as a read aloud, such as having students form a picture in their minds as they hear the poem and then read it again as they view Holmer’s artwork.”

Rainy day tip #3: GAMES – Games can pass a lot of time. Whether you’re with the family or on a date, carnival games are usually covered by some sort of tent. They’ll make you a day-saving hero if you can get people involved in the fun. Whack-a-mole is especially good for helping out a grumpy kid or for adults seeking a sense of accomplishment.

Reviewer JarmVee keeps things simple but poignant in her review noting,

“The gentle Haiku poetry coupled with delicate illustrations depicting scenes from all over the world bring rest to the reader’s mind— and plenty to ponder. I wish there would have been more pages to the book!”

Lastly, Jane, notes how she really enjoyed reading the book with her children. She explains, “As a mom, I always appreciate chances to sneak in literature to review, such as haiku, with my kids in a fun way. . .

My favorite part of reading this with my kids was the quiet pause between the reading of the haiku and the turning of the page. We all sat and soaked in the words along with the perfect tiny details in the illustrations.”

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