Synopsis from Kids Can Press:
In this timely, poetic story of hope amid loss, acclaimed writer and storyteller Jan Andrews’s touching picture book reminds us how, even on the darkest days, light can always be found.
It’s a normal day, at first, for a girl on her family farm. But soon, the wind picks up. It blows harder and harder and harder. Her mother grabs her baby brother. Her father opens the door to the root cellar. The family piles in and sits in darkness. When they are finally able to emerge, their home is gone. Through a series of short sentences, many beginning with “I remember … ,” readers share with the girl her experience of shock, terror, sadness and, finally, hope.
Acclaimed, award-winning children’s author and storyteller Jan Andrews’s last-ever picture book contains a beautiful and grace-filled story of resilience. Using a child’s point of view and the perspective of remembering, Andrews’s expressive writing provides comfort as it portrays the way joy and laughter can be found in even the worst times. Dorothy Leung uses fluid lines to convey the energy and the emotional arc of the story as her images move quickly from ordinary to extraordinary. With so many natural and human-caused disasters affecting children every day, this deceptively simple book offers a gentle discussion-starter as it captures a universal experience through one specific story.
About: When the Wind Came is a children’s picture book written by Jan Andrews and illustrated by Dorothy Leung. It was published on 6/7/2022 by Kids Can Press, an imprint of Hachette Book Group, hardcover, 32 pages. The genres are children’s fiction, picture book, and nature. According to Kids Can Press’ website, it is “the largest Canadian-owned children’s publisher in the world.” The Toronto-based publisher has variety of books for all readers, from picture books to non-fiction, graphic novels, young adult, and more. Please see below for more information about the author, illustrator, and publisher.
My Experience: I started reading When the Wind Came for my toddler’s bedtime on 6/10/2022 and we finished it that same night. We have since read it again couple of times. A good story about family and nature. I loved the detailed descriptions of how the older sister was feeling the day the wind came. The illustrations were fantastic. I loved how the dad took care of the animals before the family went into hiding. The dad also helped to carry the baby brother when the mom prepared a meal. I loved how the family deal with the aftermath of their situation after nature destroyed their home.
This book opened up to cows grazing on the open field. A girl reading her book under a tree, her dad maintaining the cattle, and her mom taking care of her little brother. Their house was nearby as well as the root cellar. The girl remembered the noises right before the wind came. She remembered how strong the wind felt around her. She remembered the steps her mom and dad took to keep them safe. She remembered how it felt to hide in the cellar. She remembered what happened to her family’s home after the wind passed. The family somehow found a way to keep going and even laughing.
When the Wind Came was well written and illustrated. I loved the ending, how the family discovered a way to start over, amid what looked like a great loss. I loved how kids played a big role in this story. The nature’s story followed a little girl’s view. It was the girl’s action that brought changes to her family. She got her brother smiling and eventually the family laughing. She thought the laughter couldn’t cure the sadness but it gave the family an unexpected change. A wonderful story and I recommend everyone to read this book!
I rate it 5 stars!
About the Author and Illustrator:
Jan Andrews is the award-winning author of numerous books for children, including The Auction, The Very Last First Time, Stories at the Door and Rude Stories. She has been a Governor General’s Award finalist three times, was the founding president of Storytellers of Canada, and was appointed to the Order of Canada. (Info obtained from Kids Can Press’ website, book photos obtained from Edelweiss).
Dorothy Leung studied and worked in architecture before taking the headlong plunge into her illustration dream. In her work she strives to evoke empathy, nostalgia and wonder. When the Wind Came is her first book; The Bird Feeder is her second.
A subtle, constant presence in Dorothy’s periphery, birds have always been a point of fascination for her. They remind her of adaptability, resilience, freedom, spirit and the passage of time. Dorothy lives near Tkaronto (Toronto), Ontario.
Facebook: @doroleung (Photo and info obtained from Kids Can Press’ website).
More Information about Kids Can Press
***Many thanks to Kids Can Press for the opportunity to read and review. Please be assured that my opinions are honest.