Taking On The Thunder! The Rhino Who Swallowed the Storm by LeVar Burton
IN THE MIDDLE OF THE MORNING, MICA MOUSE TREMBLED UNDER HER BLANKET. RAIN CRASHED. WIND RATTLED THE SHUTTERS.
MORE THAN ANYTHING, MICA MOUSE WAS AFRAID OF STORMS.
Mica had been through a destructive hurricane the year before, and for her, rain and thunder automatically means bad things to follow.
Papa Mouse wants to soothe his daughter, so he chooses a bit of bibliotherapy in a story in which a magical blue rhino is able to swallow a thunderstorm. But Little Rhino discovers that having a scary storm inside of him doesn't exactly make him feel sunny!
LIKE A TORNADO HE SPUN AS THE STORM RAGED INSIDE.
Little Rhino turns to his friend for help--Turtle, the Bees, Kangaroo, Whale--all tell him that there is hope ahead. Spider spins out some advice.
YOU WILL FIND MORE HELPERS ON YOUR ROAD TO TOMORROW.
For children for whom lightning and thunder are really scary, LeVar Burton, star of the Reading Rainbow series, offers a story of a Little Rhino who learns to overcome the feelings inside himself, in his The Rhino Who Swallowed a Storm (Reading Rainbow, 2014). Younger preschoolers may find Burton's metaphor in this fable confusing, conflating rational fears of a deadly tropical storm with a sort of upset tummy for the fantastical rhino hero who vanquishes the storm. There is, however, a comforting theme that there are always others to provide care in tough times, Courtney Fletcher's illustrations are charming, soothing, and lovely, and Burton appends a section,“Take a Deeper Look” which offers help in talking out both irrational and very real fears. For the storm sensitive among younger readers, try Jamie Swenson's humorous take in Boom! Boom! Boom! and Mary Lynn Ray's easy-going tale of a thunder-phobic pooch, BOOM!: Big, Big Thunder & One Small Dog.