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Come On, Rain!
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Come On, Rain!

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  1,298 Ratings  ·  226 Reviews
"Newbery Medalist Karen Hesse recreates the body and soul-renewing experience of a summer downpour after a sweltering city heat wave. Lyrically written and lovingly illustrated." - School Library Journal

"Hesse's language is a quiet, elegant surge.... Muth contributes fine watercolor atmospherics." - Kirkus Reviews
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published March 1st 1999 by Scholastic Press
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Mar 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I love this book! I felt immediately engulfed in the drooping, oppressive heat of a long, rainless summer... the expectancy and the urgent NEED for the rain to come and break the spell... the sheer delight of the first raindrops and the mounting glee as the rain pours down. This is a lovely, lovely story from two bright stars in the children's book galaxy. I think this was done before Muth became "famous" for his Zen books. I'm familiar with Karen Hesses novels but now I'll be on the look out fo ...more
Lisa Vegan
Mar 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Lisa by: Kathryn
This is a delightfully told story, told via some lovely poetry that just flows off the page. The illustrations are really wonderful and special too.

The descriptions were spot on: of the unbearable oppressive heat, of the refreshing and fun rain, of the joy of play, of how certain moments can be so special, and captured so well the compelling anticipation.

It reminded me of childhood and the magic some rainstorms seemed to have.

It was both sophisticated and accessible, and both fun and emotionally
Mar 16, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Ann by: Kathryn
What a great read! I love the illustrations that complement the text, and completely capture that hazzy summer heat.

A longer picture book than most, Hesse really gives the feel of summer and that anxiousness when looking at those first storm clouds on the horizon! While at times I thought the text was a tad too artsy, that's really just my own personal taste.

Overall a really great and unique book! Definitely recommended!
Jul 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens-book
I normally don't review the books that I read to my daughter but this one did something to me. While I was reading it, I felt myself settle into my Southern drawl that I normally disguise every chance I get and I just enjoyed the words, explaining some to my five year old, and allowing the rest to settle over me. I felt like we shared something special while reading this, something that only mothers and daughters can share. Karen Hesse has a lyrical way with words and I was thoroughly impressed.
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I love Karen Hesse's writing. She just has a way of putting words together and making them sound like dances. Come On, Rain! is the story of a young girl waiting for rain after a drought and the celebration she, and her friends and family, has after the rain comes. In addition to the beautiful writing, the watercolor illustrations adds an extra beauty to the story making it even more like a piece of art. I also truly appreciate the diversity of
Liz Hammet
Come on, Rain! Written by Karen Hesse and illustrated by Jon J Muth encompasses beautiful illustrations of the African American characters and slang. The story seems to be set in the Deep South. The main characters are Mamma and Tessie. Mamma and Tessie live together and they are witnessing a drought in the midst of exasperating heat. The Mamma and little girl, Tessie, are beautifully illustrated and seem to have a good relationship. They are impatiently waiting on the rain to come, and while th ...more
Nov 20, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This book is about a girl and her mother that desperately wanted it to rain. They are going through a drought and need for it to rain because their plants are parched and they are miserable because they do not have an air-conditioner. Finally, the clouds begin to get dark and it starts to rain. The daughter calls her friends to tell them to put their swimsuits on and play in the rain. When the mother’s sees this they go outside too and play in the rain. This book contains a lot sentence types, a ...more
Feb 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens, to-buy
Come On, Rain is so well written. I how poetic the writing is (similes, metaphors, alliteration, sensory details to create wonderful imagery) and the illustrations go perfectly with the words. It would be a perfect read for in the middle of a heat wave and a great example for good writing for my students.
Nojood Alsudairi
Mar 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Tasneem
The angles the illustrator chose to draw his characters are amazing. The feet are captioned in a way one want his own foot on that street. The bird's eye view is amazingly awsome. The text is great but the illustrations made the book much more enjoyable.
The Reading Countess
Mar 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Gorgeous. This is a book one returns to over and over again. Lingering on every page is what I want to do. Instead, I place it carefully on my "mentor texts" shelf waiting to be relished with new eyes for new purposes many, many times. Did I say this one is lovely?
Oct 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I can't believe I didn't discover this book earlier. The words and illustrations are beautiful.
Kirstin Kemppainen
The main character begs the sky for some rain. This books has great language to expand children's vocabulary.
Feb 25, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016
Beautifully illustrated by Jon J. Muth, this picture book captures a simple moment- the arrival of rain on a hot day- and celebrates mothers and daughters in the process.
Rebecca Han
Dec 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Reading Log #2
Title: Come On, Rain!
Author: Karen Hesse
Illustrator: Jon J. Muth
Genre: Picture book of poem
Theme(s): Families, growth and change, multiculturalism, nature and seasons, neighbors
Opening line/sentence: “Come on, rain!” Tess pleads to the sky as listless vines and parched plants droop in the endless heat.
Brief Book Summary: A heavy drought in the summer exhausts everyone, especially Tess and her mother. Tess wishes rain to relieve everyone in the neighborhood from the unbearable hea
Rachel Cartaya
Oct 10, 2016 rated it liked it
Type of Book: This book is a realistic fiction picture book.

Awards: This book has won the Society of Illustrator's Gold Medal for excellent illustrations.

Summary: This book is about a young girl and her mother on a very hot, summer day. Both ladies wish for rain to come. The heat is pounding, and their plants are drooping. It has been a while since they've had a good rain. The girl begins to hear the sounds of thunder, but her mother doesn't hear it. She asks if she can put on her swimsuit, but
Beautifully done! This delightful story is about a girl who is hoping for some rain. In fact, her mother and her friends and their mothers, are all hoping for rain. They're having a dry spell and the heat is getting to everyone. One good rain is what they want.

I can relate to this story... I've lived in the southern US my entire life, and have spent many a summer wishing for some rain. Not only did I enjoy the writing, the artwork was great also.



Kaitlin Howard
Nov 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Right away I could feel the heat Hesse described in the story and the joy of the downpour when it came. A wonderful celebration of a moment. The writing is lyrical and descriptive. It feels honest. The illustrations beautifully compliment the text in this story. This book would be an enjoyable read for all ages with its easy to understand, yet purposeful and powerful text and illustrations. Could be used in upper elementary or middle grades while working on descriptions and adding detail to text ...more
Tessa Duncan
Tessie is a young girl who is tired of dealing with the sweltering summer heat. Everyday she waits for rain to come and it never does. But one day it does rain, and Tessie and her friends go outside to play in the rain. After the community sees the girls playing and rejoicing in the rain, everyone decides to join.
Miss Sarah
May 23, 2017 rated it liked it
A young neighborhood is entrenched in a drought. The young narrator goes through her neighborhood chronicling the drought and then forecasting and enjoying the ensuing rain. Love the friendship and mother daughter themes. Early readers or one on one for length.
Dana Zielke
Sep 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
FANTASTIC mentor text!! I used it for showing student how to develop and describe setting, characters AND using descriptive word choice. It's not super wordy, but it has powerful writing. The illustrations are lovely. Even my fifth graders loved this picture book.
Jun 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mentor-texts
Excellent mentor text for word choice. In addition to high quality vocabulary, there are similes and metaphors sprinkled throughout the text.
Jul 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
I love Karen Hesse's use of language in this book! It will be a great book to use in my classroom!
Jun 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
You can feel the heat...& the relief & joy. Sweet illustrations of young girls, friends.
Dec 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
My husband loved reading this book aloud!
Mar 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens, poc-mc
The text and illustrations do a wonderful job conveying the heavy hand of summer heat and the hopes of the little girls yearning for rain. I loved all the wry observations and the sweet way Tess buttered up her mom with iced tea so that she could play outside in her swimsuit. The watercolor illustrations of the multiracial group of young girls dancing in the rain with their mothers are really wonderful as well! This will be a great read for youngsters feeling pressed by summer's heat.
Feb 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
The illustrations are beautiful as well as the language, yet it is also accessible to the young listener. My only issue with this book is that I wish the text wasn't sooo wordy in its descriptions. I feel like the author could have captured the same feeling and sense with 2/3 of the words.
Juliet Schenk
Mar 16, 2014 rated it liked it
Come On, Rain! by Karen Hesse is a short, lyrical story about a young girl Tessie and her friends. Throughout the story they are wishing for the rain to come so that they can go out in dance in it. The thing I like about this book is that it’s short but filled with great descriptions that transport the reader into the story. The illustrations are also excellent which would greatly benefit the comprehension level for all readers, especially ELLs. This book would be a great read aloud in grades 3 ...more
Dec 04, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: multicultural
1. A little girl waits patiently for the rain to arrive on a hot summer day. She describes the heat and its intensity through multiple descriptive scenes. She knows that the rain will come, sometime, she just has to wait patiently. The story finishes when her neighborhood friends and their moms dance in the long anticipated rain.

2. Karen Hesse does a wonderful job with descriptive language throughout the story. The imagery within the text makes the reader part of the story as they can relate to
Feb 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
One of this book's most defining features aside from its unique story line would be the amazing descriptions used. Karen Hesse writes about how a much-needed rain storm comes to a drought-struken area and how greatly it is enjoyed by all the characters, specifically Tessie and her mom. The language used in this book, and how it is written altogether, make it feel magical in a way, and the illustrations only add to the whimsical feeling. I think this book would be best for children 4-9 because th ...more
Lamar Sanders
Jul 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Main Characters: Tessie, Momma
Point of View: 1st person
Setting: City block on a very hot summer day
Plot: The story opens with a Tessie and Momma suffering through a dry spell on a very hot summer day. Tessie is optimistically hoping for rain when she spots storm clouds in the distance. She begins to alert her friends and neighbors of the approaching rain so that they may gather and enjoy the relief together. When the rain arrives, her friends and their mother all dance in the rain, basking in th
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Karen Hesse is an American author of children's literature and literature for young adults, often with historical settings. Her novel Out of the Dust was the winner of the 1998 Newbery Medal and the Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction. In 2002, Hesse was a recipient of the MacArthur Fellowship.

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