If I Was the Sunshine
It is a little known fact that early in our relationship, I used to call Mr. Bookworm “Sunshine”. It may sound childish, but his smile lights up my heart. And I have such fond feelings for that name, likely germinating from the fact that my high school Chemistry and Physics teacher used to call us all her ‘sunshines’. It didn’t hurt that she was brilliant and a bit quirky and inspiring and, of course, English so she said it in a delightfully English accent. She (and our equally brilliant and engaging Biology teacher) are likely the reasons why I insisted on majoring in something in the Sciences (eventually settling on Biology) instead of only majoring in English/Creative Writing….even way before I realized that I did, in fact, want to become a physician.
So, when I was asked if I’d like to receive an ARC for a review of If I Was the Sunshine, and I read the beautifully poetic first lines, I was all in.
if i was the sunshine
and you were the day
i’d call you hello!
and you’d call me stay
if you were the winter
and i was the spring
i’d call you whisper
and you’d call me sing…
Julie Fogliano has woven together a lovely soft sort of ode to a loved one in a call and answer format. It’s a quiet melody that is not quite predictable, but depicts an ongoing relationship that draws two people (or things) together. Loren Long’s gorgeous illustrations are vibrant and full of flight, ocean waves, changing seasons, and always, always the ways we interconnect with each other and beyond.
It’s certainly no secret that many picture book agents adamantly say ‘no rhyming text’ on their submission pages and I can see why. I’ve read many a book with a great concept and story that gets suckered into pigeonholing their story by making it rhyme. They then have restrictions on what they can say. And I have read out loud many books to my kids that make me cringe. IF I WAS THE SUNSHINE is definitely not in that group—the poetry and story are organic and not forced, ending in a lovely way to induce your little ones to go to bed. I would even venture to call this book a lullaby, the best kind of bedtime story, and one that you’ll want to read over and over again.
If I Was the Sunshine is out today! Go find it in independent and not-so-independent bookstores everywhere. :D
If you’d like to enter our GIVEAWAY for your very own copy, please comment below or on our IG post of the book. Open to U.S. residents only, sponsored by Simon and Schuster, not affiliated with Instagram. One person will be chosen at random. Giveaway contest ends on May 9 at 1159pm, PST.
If you’d like to read more about If I Was the Sunshine, here is the Blog Tour Schedule:
Monday, May 6 – Picture Books Blogger
Tuesday, May 7 – Dr. Bookworm! :D
Wednesday, May 8 – Bookworm for Kids
Thursday, May 9 – Katie Reviews Books
Friday, May 10 – Twinning for Books
Saturday, May 11 – The Baby Bookworm
Sunday, May 12 – Oh, for the Hook of a Book!