Thursday, August 25, 2016

Thunder Cake by Patricia Polacco

Patricia Polacco. How amazing is she? Her books are so heartwarming and deep. And her illustrations! It took me awhile to warm up to them and the colors and style she used, but now I can't imagine not loving them. 

Those goat ears...!

Storm approaching!

This is the story of a grandmother normalizing the thunder for her terrified little granddaughter.

Patricia Polacco has a small paragraph on the title page saying she used to visit her Babushka in Michigan and the storms in the Michigan sky seemed more-so than anywhere else. This book is how her grandmother helped her overcome her fear of thunderstorms.

"Child, you come out from under that bed. It's only thunder you're hearing," my grandma said.

Grandmas are good at hugging.

Grandma pulls out the recipe for Thunder Cake. 

As the storm rumbles closer and the little girl counts the seconds between the lightning and the thunder, to see how far away the storm is, the grandmother keeps her hopping, collecting everything they need for Thunder Cake. 

The little girl isn't feeling brave, but her grandmother ignores her bursts of fear and talks soothingly of the next thing they will need to get.

Once everything has been collected from around the farm, they settle into the kitchen to bake and churn the butter for the frosting. 

They pop the cake in the oven and spread the cloth on the table. I love that they make things pretty before the cake.

Her grandmother compliments her on her bravery.

"I'm not brave, Grandma," I said. "I was under the bed! Remember?"
"But you got out from under it," she answered. "and 
you got  eggs from mean old Nellie Peck Hen, 
you got mild from old Kick Cow,
you went through Tangleweed Woods to the dry shed,
you climbed the trellis in the barnyard.
From where I sit, only a very brave person could have done all them things."

I love how her grandmother builds her up. How she gave her the opportunity to do brave things with her grandmother safely beside her. 

Such a great book about a grandmother's love, overcoming our fears, and discovering our bravery in doing everyday things. 

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