Under the Love Umbrella by Davina Bell and Allison Colpoys
The last collaboration between this talented author–illustrator pair was the gorgeous, award-winning Underwater Fancy Dress Parade and this new picture book is just as wonderful. It’s an all-inclusive, sensitive and loving embrace between a child and a parent or carer. Four diverse children are featured in the panels in everyday scenarios where a child might feel vulnerable, such as being left out of a game, feeling the loss of a friend, when you’ve made a mistake or when life seems just a bit overwhelming. The gentle message is, of course, that no matter what happens you are always safe and cared for under an invisible umbrella of love.
This lyrically written message is powerful, but what really makes this book pop is the vitality of the illustrations that have an extraordinary fluorescent colour. Bravo to Bell and Colpoys for a producing a stand-out picture book that will reassure and delight children aged from 3 to 7, along with the adults who love them.
Angela Crocombe is the Children’s Book Buyer at Readings Carlton.