Sandra L. Richards: Rice & Rocks

Tradition takes flight in Rice & Rocks, a picture book celebrating culture and diversity.

Giovanni’s friends are coming over for Sunday dinner, and his grandmother is serving rice and beans. Giovanni is embarrassed—he does not like “rice and rocks” and worries his friends will think the traditional Jamaican dish is weird. But his favorite Auntie comes to the rescue. She and Giovanni’s pet parrot, Jasper, take him on a magical journey across the globe, visiting places where people eat rice and rocks. This exciting story celebrates the varied traditions of every culture while also highlighting the delicious similarities that bring us all together.

I’ve reviewed a bit of KidLit on ILR, but it’s all been Middle Grade and above. Until I had nephews, I never cared a bit about reading children’s books. My niece reads a little, but she’s older. But my nephews love to read and so I’m always looking for books at sales that they might like, and have started keeping books on my shelf for when they come to visit–especially now that we live closer to home.

Rice & Rocks looked so beautiful that I just couldn’t resist a copy when it was sent my way. I was a little nervous, since I hadn’t reviewed a children’s book before, but why not start?

Guys, if you have kids, put this on your buy list right away! The art, by Megan Kayleigh Sullivan, is stunning. STUN-NING. Your littles are going to love pointing out everything on the pages–the puppies and the big gray bird. But it’s the story that really will get you. It’s going to spark a lot of conversations, positive ones, within your family. It’s multi-cultural, tying several families together across the world, and then bringing it home to an American home for Sunday dinner.

We’ve all eaten rice and rocks at some point–and how fun would it be to read this, and then make the dish for supper that night? Sounds like a pretty great activity to me! I might have to put ketchup on it for one of my nephews, but it might be fun to try.

What’s your favorite way to prepare Rice and Rocks?

Bostick Communications and Wise Ink provided a copy of this book for unbiased review. This post contains affiliate links.


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