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SUN WISHES by Patricia Storms


by Patricia Storms ; illustrated by Milan Pavlović

Pub Date: May 3rd, 2022
ISBN: 978-1-77306-450-5
Publisher: Groundwood

The sun sends the world and its inhabitants warm thoughts for peace, unity, and positivity.

A smiling sun shines down on each double-page spread, just as the moon did in Storms and Pavlović’s previous book, Moon Wishes (2019). Using the refrain “if I were the sun,” the narrator describes the sun’s movement from sunrise to sunset throughout the seasons of the year. The sun is personified as a serene explorer, muse, and comforter who lovingly wakes the world with “a gentle morning song” and ends each day with peaceful rest. In between rising and setting, the sun explores “every corner of this wondrous earth.” Alas, the narrative is disappointingly disjointed—the sun flits among pages that depict African wildlife, a school of smiling fish swimming up toward the sun, and a bear fishing in a river. Looking at the world from the sun’s point of view, the narrator is better able to “delight in all our differences”—the accompanying illustration shows 11 disparate birds perched in the same tree. Meanwhile, human diversity is portrayed on other pages: Happy children—some with brown skin, others with pink skin—make snow angels; a man using a wheelchair sits at a harvest table; and an Asian-presenting man wearing a conical hat walks across marshland. Pavlović’s loose mixed-media, colored-pencil, and ink illustrations use warm colors and are as consistently uplifting as Storms’ pretty but desultory word pictures. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A sweet and well-meaning lesson in personification and metaphor, but this picture book fails to shine.

(Picture book. 4-7)