The beautiful and poignant The Underwater Fancy-Dress Parade floored me with its gentle and understanding embrace. But Under the Love Umbrella is more like a big, warm, reassuring bear hug from someone you love most in the world.
Had a miserable day? Broken something? Been left out of a game? No matter, because whatever happens to us in life, there is always someone to make us feel safe and cared for under our imaginary umbrella of love.
The gentle rhyming text is compelling and never, ever cloying. It reminds children that they can cope with the hurdles life throws at them with the ever-present love and comfort of family. This message is stunningly amplified through the effervescent, vintage-style illustrations with bold but restrained hits of neon colour.
It's a heartening book for children venturing out into the world each day, and the final question, 'Who's under your love umbrella?', is a glorious opportunity to talk about the family and special friends who love us most.
Title: Under the Love Umbrella
Author: Davina Bell
Illustrator: Alison Colpoys
Publisher: Scribble Books, $24.99
Publication Date: 27 February 2017
Format: Hard cover
For ages: 3 - 7
Type: Picture Book