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.
Publisher: Wise Ink Creative Publishing
Publication date: August 23rd 2016
This author is new to me, the book is her debut and it doesn’t disappoint. My first impression of the book was that it was a good sized hardback (perfect for frequent use) with a very appealing cover (the artwork is lovely in its detail) and the artwork detail is maintained throughout the book. This detail adds to the text within the book and really draws in the reader. Until I read this book I had never heard about a dish called rice and rocks (rice and beans).
The story is about a young boy called Giovanni who is excited that it’s Sunday because that’s the day that all his family come to visit. Also on this day Giovanni has some friends coming over which he’s concerned about because his Grandma is cooking rice and rocks (he assumes that his friends won’t appreciate this dish because they aren’t of his nationality). What he finds out is that not only is he very wrong (all his friends have had this dish and loved it albeit they each call it by different names), but that this dish is enjoyed by many people the world over.
I really enjoyed this book and I will be very happy to read it to any child of any age. It teaches us all that we can’t assume that people of different skin colours don’t share similar traditions and/or food with ourselves. The teaching about appreciating different cultures is a very important message that we need to hear these days.
Recommend for: Anyone. This book could be read to babies and children alike. Adults would also get a lot from this book.