Title: If I was the sunshine
Author: Julie Fogliano
Illustrator: Loren Long
Published By: Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2019
Sometimes I go to the local library and randomly choose books off the shelf. Occasionally I’m alone, but I usually have one of my two enthusiastic helpers with me. Last Saturday, it was Lily. She’s seven now, so past the age of picture books (so she says, anyway). But she was more than willing to play “close your eyes and choose any book you want from this shelf.” Over and over again.
She picked six books. Of the six, this one was my favourite. It’s basically dreamy poetry and beautiful art combined, so what’s not to love? Here’s the tl;dr version. (Although, ‘c’mon, it’s a picture book. It’s not exactly tl, know what I mean?)
The story is an exchange between two people/animals/insects/various beings that love each other. It’s a sweet back-and-forth, saying “if you called me this, I’d call you that.” For instance:
“If you were the winter,
and I was the spring,
I’d call you whisper,
and you’d call me sing.”
Gorgeous, right? The text is lovely. The pictures absolutely make this book something to cherish. The colours are vibrant, the animals are friendly and adorable, the book itself is actually kind of large, which gave me the feeling I was looking at one of those fancy coffee-table art books (note: I own zero fancy coffee-table art books personally).
I can imagine my girls loving this story right before bedtime. It’s such a soothing. calming, gentle read. And that’s so important. When Vivi and Lily were little, I read a LOT of picture books before bed. I’m a sucker for funny books (as are they), so we’d definitely read one or two silly stories. But the just-before-we-turn-out-the-lights books were always soporific. Something soothing, something that would let them dream sweet dreams and know they were safe and loved.
This is one of those books.
Mama’s review: 5/5 stars