Emma teaches Henry by example how to meditate and be mindful, especially after he has quenched his thirst and subsequently wound himself up with sugary lemonade.
Narrator Emma opens the story meditating quietly with other children her age on mats. The room is a soothing, cool blue. A page turn shows younger brother Henry, red cup of lemonade in hand, hanging from orange drapes with copious evidence of his out-of-control behavior behind him. “Henry likes to run, wrestle, and roar, and drink lemonade. I call him The Lemonade Hurricane.” The story continues with examples of Henry’s rambunctiousness but also shows times when he is constructively engaged. Some readers will believe he is just a regular, active boy, but the story places emphasis on the negative effects of sugar. Hoping to quiet Henry, Emma shows him how to “Sit. Bow. Breathe.” In time Henry gives it a try and successfully calms himself by pretending “he is on top of an elephant and has to bow really slowly so he does not fall off.” Morris’ ink-and-watercolor illustrations present a likable pair of Caucasian sibs; modulations in her palette accompany quietly fanciful imagery as Emma’s lessons in meditation take hold. Extensive notes provide practical information and summarize a story from Thicht Naht Hanh that inspired this title.
A child-friendly introduction to the practice of meditation and the benefits of mindfulness. (Picture book. 4-7)