HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Rani in Search of a Rainbow
Author: Shaila Abdullah
Illustrator: Bijan Samaddar
Publisher: Loving Healing Press, 2014
ISBN-13: 978-1-61599-241-6 (Hardcover)
ISBN-13: 978-1-61599-242-3 (Paperback)
ISBN-13: 978-1-61599-243-0 (Ebook)
Related websites: http://shailaabdullah.com/rani-in-search-of-rainbow/ (author), http://www.LHPress.com (publisher)
Language level: 1
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Reading level: Ages 6-8 and up
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Abdullah, Shaila. Rani in Search of a Rainbow (published in 2014 by Loving Healing Press, 5145 Pontiac Trail, Ann Arbor, MI 48105). Can you imagine what it might be like to live in a refugee camp? Eight and a half year old Rani lives with her father, mother, and grandmother in a Pakistani village. One day it begins to rain, and everyone is happy. But then it continues to rain and rain and rain, and then the people aren’t so happy because it is starting to flood. Rani and her family must flee their home. They are soon rescued and flown by a helicopter to a relief campsite where she meets a boy named Juju. Rani’s mother delivers babies. Her father unloads supplies from the trucks. Even Grandma Daadi assists with the cooking. Rani and Juju want to help, but they are too small. Her father tells her, “Try to help in a way that only children can.” Then Juju becomes sick with a fever and chills. Is there anything Rani can do to help? If so, what is it?
This sweet, touching story is based on the historic 2010 floods in Pakistan which affected twenty million people, including 8.6 million children. As a result of reading it or having it read to them, youngsters will be introduced to the culture of Pakistan. In the back, there is a glossary of Urdu words used in the text. Beyond this general educational benefit, they will find gentle encouragement to be thoughtful of others in need and to do whatever they can to help such people. Also, the book could be a useful tool for young children to understand such tragedies and make some sense of them. Rani in Search of a Rainbow is scheduled for publication in November of 2014. Author Shaila Abdullah, along with her ten year old daughter Aanyah, has also written My Friend Suhana: A Story of Friendship and Cerebral Palsy, which I reviewed on January 20, 2014.