A mildly eccentric story about what happens when the rain stops.
A family of three (all white) lives on an island where it rains all the time and the wind blows the same. Not to worry. The family is to the manner born: Mrs. Paddling rises early, dons a mac and a sou’wester, and catches the family a mess of fish for dinner. Mr. Paddling, in a natty one-piece and waxed mustache, gives swimming lessons upstream, and the house is cozy despite the “drip, drip, drip” through the roof (a pail will suffice). Once, long ago, Mr. Paddling wrote to his uncle to come meet the family. One day, Uncle Bastian, “living a lonely life in hotels and eating all by himself,” discovers the forgotten letter and decides to pay a visit. Unfortunately, he times his visit with a drought; the family is upstream looking for water, and thus no one’s at home. As Uncle Bastian leaves, the rains return, and he almost drowns, only to be saved by his nephew. An enormous dinner of fish and chips ends the adventure. The artwork looks like something Edward Gorey might create when feeling warmly sentimental, and the text has a similarly understated, unflappably British cheer to it.
An offbeat entertainment worthy of return visits. (Picture book. 3-8)