Friends help a sad raisin learn to focus on the positive in this picture book with rhyming text for young children.
A little raisin drooping on a vine and thinking unhappy thoughts doesn’t see any “raisin to be happy” until his fellow raisins help him see the good in the world in this debut picture book written and illustrated by Baldwin, a writer with a background in film and children’s computer games. Using a basic but effective rhyme scheme—and a play on the word “raisin”—Baldwin offers a welcome message about the value of mindfulness and positivity. “The sunshine’s gone—it’s raining! That’s a raisin to be sad,” says the troubled little raisin. His comforting friend suggests an alternate perspective: “Rain makes things clean and green—it’s a raisin to be glad!” And so it goes, as the sad raisin learns to find happiness in simple pleasures: blueberries, flowers, butterflies that are “flying paintings that float and flutter,” friends, fresh air, and laughter. The simple verses on each colorful, two-page spread appear to be lettered by hand. Baldwin’s cartoony raisin characters, purple and peanut-shaped, with big eyes and black arms and legs, superimposed over realistic outdoor settings of blue sky and grape vines, have an amateurish charm.
An earnest, good-hearted rhyming picture book that shows how sadness and happiness can be a matter of awareness and perspective.