A comic book for the littlest readers.
The narrator introduces Grumpy Cloud, pictured in a full-page panel by himself in an otherwise blue sky, raining grouchily on an unhappy rabbit. Why is he grumpy? A sequence of four panels on verso depicts him being wakened by an early bird, rained on, snagged on a mountaintop, and losing his hat to the wind. Three further panels, staggered down the page on recto, show him about to lick an ice cream cone, the ice cream falling out, and him glaring at the now-empty cone; the single word of text reads “SPLAT!” That’s a very sophisticated double-page spread, indicating that this book is probably best suited to toddlers who have had a fair amount of exposure to books already. That the storyline concerns emotional literacy reinforces this. Declaring that he’s “just grumpy because,” Grumpy Cloud does his best to resist the good cheer of Sunny (the sun). He drives Sunny away with a couple of thunderbolts and a “KABOOM!”—only to feel guilty and apologize (with a little smile). Companion title I’m Sunny! focuses on Sunny, who finds a balloon, refuses to share it with Tizzy Tornado, feels guilty, and apologizes. Both titles tell their stories in a mix of narrative panels, speech bubbles, and ebullient sound effects.
Together with its companion, a fine way to introduce toddlers to comic-book codes and emotional literacy—talk about bang for your buck. (Graphic board book. 2-4)