rainbow stew

Rainbow Stew by Cathryn Falwell

Released on June 15, 2013.

Three children scramble out of bed at their grandpa’s house to a rainy day.  But they don’t want to stay inside, so Grandpa sends them outside to find colors to add to his Rainbow Stew.  They splash their way into the garden and look under the wet green leaves to find what colors are hidden beneath.  They find all sorts of green vegetables like beans, spinach, and cucumbers, some rosy radishes, some purple cabbage, yellow peppers, red tomatoes and brown potatoes.  Soon their basket is full and the three children are muddy and happy.  They all head inside to cook the stew together, each child helping in their own way.  Then there is quiet time inside as the stew cooks, until finally they can all enjoy Rainbow Stew!

Falwell merrily combines a love of gardening and a willingness to get muddy in this book.  She uses quick rhymes that add a bouncy feel to the book, maintaining that sense of joy that is everywhere in this book.  I am particularly pleased to see a book with a grandfather taking expert care of grandchildren in this book. 

The illustrations are filled with falling rain, but also small faces turned up into it and knees plunked down into the mud.  The completely African-American family is also great to see in a picture book that easily integrates into rain or gardening or color units and story times. 

Ripe and ready to be picked, this is a great choice for sharing aloud in spring or fall.  Appropriate for ages 3-5.

Reviewed from digital galley received from Lee & Low Books via NetGalley.