In the cozy comfort of her house a little mouse is playing with her toys on the rug near her father as he reads and most certainly digests the Gouda Times newspaper in his big green chair. Outside the window the wind is blowing and the rain is pounding down. The sounds remind her of the big, bad storm that came the year before and destroyed their home.
The little mouse gets up and goes to her father to tell him how afraid she feels and how all the stormy sounds are making her worry that their house might be destroyed yet again.
Her father reads her a story about a rhino who once upon a time was also caught in a terrible storm.
This is a story about the storms we carry inside of us sometimes. They feel horrible and it can leave us in a dark, lonely place. Children can find themselves in this place when terrible things happen to them in their world. Maybe a family member is killed or someone dies in a car accident. Maybe the house burns down or they are witnesses to domestic violence. There can be difficult storms in young lives.
Our Rhino in the story is lucky. As he struggles with his storm, others come into his life to teach him and help him to get out of his dark place. This story offers simple but trustworthy steps for finding your way out of the darkness and helps you move beyond the storm into the light.
A much-needed picture book for young children dealing with trauma and loss.
32 pages 978-0990539506 Ages 5-9
Recommended by: Barb Langridge, abookandahug.com
When little Mica Mouse is scared by thunder booming outside her cozy home, Papa Mouse reaches for just the right story to comfort her. Hugging her close, he begins to read The Rhino Who Swallowed a Storm. In this poetic book-within-a-book, a happy little rhinoceros is overwhelmed by a storm that sweeps away everything he loves. Swallowing the storm just makes him feel worse, so Rhino sets off on a whimsical journey toward healing. Along the way, he meets many friends, including a kind spider, a brave kangaroo, a wise tortoise, and an uplifting whale. With their help, Rhino lets go of the storm inside and learns to see the light in a world turned gray. Mica Mouse is soothed by the story and Papa’s gentle reminder that even though bad things sometimes happen, the world is full of people who care.
In his first children’s book, longtime Reading Rainbow host LeVar Burton gives us an engaging resource to help children express their feelings and navigate through difficult experiences. The “Take a Deeper Look” page at the end of the book even provides discussion questions to facilitate a healing dialogue.--from the publisher