Author: Joseph Moore
Illustrator: Jaclyn Donnelly
“He looked all around, but he was the only raindrop left. The flower needed him. He then had a feeling that he had never known before. It was a moment before he realized it, but suddenly he was proud to be a raindrop,” Joseph Moore writes in his children’s book, Maxwell – The Raindrop Who Wouldn’t Fall.
At only fifty-six pages, this over-sized paperback book is targeted toward children from four to ten years old and makes a great calming bedtime story. The air-brushed/painted illustrations by Jaclyn Donnelly are expressive and cover the full page without overwhelming detail.
Little Maxwell is a raindrop living in a cloud, waiting for his chance to grow big enough to be part of a storm. When the big cloud moves over a small town, the other raindrops are excited to fall down upon the town. One of the drops wants to land on top of a big house while another wants to land on a person’s head. A funny raindrop wants to land on both, bouncing into a big puddle to be with his friends. But we all know, raindrops do not bounce.
When all the raindrops fall out of the cloud, Maxwell is left behind, as he does not want to be a raindrop but a bird. The wise old cloud tells him that a bird could never live without rain as the cloud moves onward in the sky.
Next the cloud stops at a big city and Maxwell still decides not to fall down while the other drops want to go fast, slow or do somersaults, but we know raindrops cannot do somersaults. This time Maxwell tells the wise cloud that he wants to be a rainbow, but is told rain is needed to make the colorful rainbow.
Lastly the cloud hovers over a farm yet Maxwell is still unsure and not ready to fall down to the ground while his friend thinks one drop can make a puddle (yet we know one raindrop cannot make a puddle). This time Maxwell wishes he was a beautiful flower.
Being the only raindrop left, he looks down over the edge of the cloud and sees a thirsty flower and feels compassion, wanting to fall directly on the flower to help it grow. After he falls and the flower is nourished, both Maxwell and his friends are happy.
In this fun, innocuous tome, Moore does a thorough job showing the importance of being needed by others and happy with yourself. Additionally, this story can lead to more scientific discussions about rain, how it gathers and falls from the clouds.