Rain Before Rainbows by Smriti Prasadam-Halls and illustrated by David Litchfield

An uplifting, stunningly beautiful book about optimism in the darkest of places.

Book blurb

Rain before rainbows. Clouds before sun. Night before daybreak. A new day’s begun.

A girl and her companion fox travel together from a place of loss and despair, through uncertain times, towards the hope of colour, light and life. Along the way, they find friends to guide and support them. Together, they build a glorious future and discover there is a way out of the darkness, into the light of the rainbow. A book with immense hope at its heart, this is a positive message for anyone who’s ever gone through a tough time.

My thoughts

This is a lovely story book aimed at children aged 3 – 7 year olds. An excellent tool for showing children that there is hope even when times are bad and difficult things happen.

‘Rain Before Rainbows’ is a simple rhyming picture book. The story of a girl and her fox friend who have to leave their home after a terrible fire engulfs the castle they lived in. The girl and the fox encounter and must deal with scary creatures and a raging storm whilst on a long journey before finally finding a new land where there are new friends to meet and eventually the darkness turns into a bright and wonderful new day.

A simple story with a powerful message. It’s a great message to share with children, not only during this strange time but also any difficult time in their lives. It’s a message to let children (and adults) know that better times will come even if there are bad things happening now. Indeed, as the title says you can’t have a rainbow without first having some rain!

The illustrations are beautiful, with lovely details and are very colourful as the cover shows. The animals are beautifully drawn. The girl and fox are ever present and are given clear expressions throughout helping bring the story to life. The images are quite magical and there is such a lot to see in each page, plenty for both children and adults to look at in this book. Many may love it for the illustrations alone.

This is a charming book, with an easy rhythm to the wonderful story with a great message. The illustrations are gorgeous. Together they are mesmerising.

I would recommend getting this picture book. It’s a great way to show and raise issues with children to help them understand that things will get better when they feel things are bad, a message that adults often need too!

‘Save With Stories’ Campaign

Rain Before Rainbows‘ has been released as a free ebook by the publisher Walker (before the physical release in October) to raise awareness and hopefully to help raise some money for the ‘Save With Stories’ campaign run by Save the Children charity.

It’s this free ebook that I have read. It is a wonderful book with which to embrace the campaign. Allowing the reader to focus – not only in these strange times but, indeed, at any time – on weird or difficult situations enabling exploration and discussions. Using the rainbow, now so instantly recognisable, as a symbol of hope.


Publisher: Walker Books (1 Oct. 2020)

Buy: Walker|AmazonSmileUK|Waterstones|Your local bookshop


Smriti Prasadam-Halls is an award-winning, internationally bestselling British author whose books for children include I LOVE YOU NIGHT AND DAY (Publisher’s Weekly #1 bestseller, Wall Street Journal bestseller), THE WAYS OF THE WOLF (English Association Non-Fiction Winner) and DON’T CALL ME SWEET (Booktrust Treasure Pack). 

Smriti worked for the BBC and across children’s publishing and television for twelve years, as a writer and commissioning editor. She began writing books of her own in 2012 and is now published in more than 30 languages worldwide. Smriti lives and works in London with her husband and three sons.

Her stories, sometimes fast-paced and funny, sometimes lyrical and tender, are always full of heart and speak to the child in all of us.

Find her online and follow her on twitter.


David Litchfield first started to draw when he was very young, creating Star Wars and Indiana Jones “mash up” comics for his older brother and sister. Since then David’s work has appeared in magazines, newspapers, books and on T-shirts. David’s first author/illustrator picture book The Bear & The Piano won the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 2016. He has also illustrated picture books for authors Ross Montgomery, Andy Stanton and Sally Lloyd-Jones, as well as book covers for David Almond, Kate DiCamillo, Neil Patrick Harris and many more.

Follow on instagram | twitter | or visit his website

One Comment on “Rain Before Rainbows by Smriti Prasadam-Halls and illustrated by David Litchfield

  1. Pingback: The Silent Wife (Will Trent Series, Book 10) by Karin Slaughter – Love Books, Read Books


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