________________ CM . . . . Volume XXIV Number 12. . . November 24, 2017


The Pink Umbrella.

Amélia Callot. Illustrated by Geneviève Godbout. Translated by Lara Hinchberger.
Toronto, ON: Tundra, January, 2018.
80 pp., hardcover & eBook, $22.99 (hc.).
ISBN 978-1-101-91923-1 (hc.), ISBN 978-1-101-91924-8 (eBook).

Grades 1-4 / Ages 6-9.

Review by Chloe Humphreys.

*** /4

Reviewed from F&Gs.


Adele smiled.

Because the day was done, because she wanted to, and because opening an umbrella inside is bad luck … Adele put on the boots and the raincoat and, on the doorstep, opened the pink polka dotted umbrella.

There was only one step to take, and she took it with joy. She turned the key in the lock and went for a walk in the rain.

It really wasn’t so bad. The air smelled wonderfully of damp grass, and the rain played a pretty melody as it fell on the umbrella.


Adele runs The Polka Dot Apron, the beloved café at the heart of a small rural village. She adores serving her regular patrons, and the villagers consider the café a haven where friendship, delicious food and lively conversation thrive. Callot’s lyrical text, coupled with Godbout’s soft and whimsical illustrations, champion the warmth and security generated by a caring community. Repeatedly, Godbout depicts beautiful scenes of shared community joy revolving around market days and long evenings spent together in the café. Usually, Adele is the purveyor of joy, but readers discover that the rain dampens her “lively, sweet and sparkling personality”. She can’t stand the dreary clouds and the cold temperatures. Lucas, the handsome local grocer, takes note, and Callot begins planting the seeds of romance. Over the course of several days, bright pink rain boots, a raincoat and an umbrella mysteriously appear in the café. These thoughtful gifts inspire Adele to see the beauty in the rain and to appreciate the kindness behind Lucas’ gesture.

     In its very gentle way, The Pink Umbrella celebrates the quiet power of love to shift your perspective of the world towards positivity. The story also celebrates compassion and encourages young readers to attune themselves to the needs of others, and to support those in their community in small but significant ways.

     The Pink Umbrella is a charming read that will brighten the shelves of any Canadian library.


Chloe Humphreys is a newly minted librarian with a passion for children’s literature and reading. She works at Vancouver Public Library and lives in beautiful North Vancouver, BC.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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