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The King Who Rained

4.27  ·  Rating details ·  635 ratings  ·  90 reviews
The TV star of The Munsters is the author/illustrator of this classic picture book that features delightful wordplay and humorous illustrations. Full color.
Paperback, Stories to Go!, 40 pages
Published May 9th 2006 by Aladdin (first published January 1st 1970)
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Average rating 4.27  · 
Rating details
 ·  635 ratings  ·  90 reviews

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Jul 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars rounded up because it exceeded expectations... which were already fairly high because I've been trying to find a copy of this to read for decades. Timeless classic for school-age children (not tots). Would be a fun mentor text.
Josh Caporale
Jul 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fred Gwynne is known most for his role as Herman Munster on the classic 1960s television show, "The Munsters." He also played the role of Officer Francis Muldoon on "Car 54, Where Are You?," Jud Crandall in the original film adaptation of Stephen King's "Pet Sematary," and as Judge Chamberlain Haller in "My Cousin Vinny." Gwynne was also an author and illustrator to a few children's books, one of which I realized I enjoyed back in second grade called "It's Easy to See Why," about a girl entering ...more
This was a funny, creative book. We loved it!
Kaethe Douglas
Jul 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Okay, so in my youth I was an extra for the movie My Cousin Vinny and it was among the best six weeks of my life. And I met Fred Gwynne and his lovely wife who were the sweetest people imaginable. And then I found out that he had written kids books. They're a lot like Amelia Bedelia, just playing around with the crazy English language. Anyway, I like them better, because of my author crush.
Apr 03, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The King Who Rained (1970), written and illustrated by Fred Gwynne, is a humorous collection of illustrations based on homophones. For example, the cover of the book as a king floating above the ground with rain pouring out of him onto the little girl who narrates. Children will find the pictures to be laugh out loud silly.

Themes: Homophones; Humor

Ways to use this book with chilren:
*Use together with Gwynne's A Little Pigeon Toad to introduce homophones.
*Have students draw humorous
Sep 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-book
Fantastic. Child needs to be old enough to understand wordplay, but it's so cute!
A book filled with a collection of humorous homonyms written by television's favorite resident of 1313 Mocking Bird Lane.
Perdani Budiarti
My teacher read this book for us in the class today. And I really love the way the writer let the reader learn some homophonic words that made not only the girl in the story confused, but also us, the English learner.

Simple story with good illustration, best combination for a children book, right?

Scott Boyken
Aug 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
My absolute favorite book as a kid. It will always hold a special place in my heart. Well done, Herman Munster.
Apr 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: granny-books
Might be confusing for the very young, but this adult enjoyed it! I have new admiration for Fred Gwynne!
Mar 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children
Okay I bought this because Fred Gwynne wrote it. And it's fun.
 Linda (Miss Greedybooks)
Sep 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s
Written by Herman Minster... Who Knew?
Cassandra Gelvin
Dec 09, 2019 rated it liked it
Take my wife, please.

This review originally published at

It's not bad for a 1970s era children's book. The illustrations are kind of sketched, like they were done in crayon or possibly pastels. The entire book is just a list of idioms, like, "Daddy says there are forks in the road." And the illustration for the spread is a bunch of giant forks where roads would be, with cars and trucks driving over them. There's some overdone ones, like "Sometimes Mommy
Mackenzie Mountain
Mar 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s-lit
This cute book doesn't have much of a continuous plot, but it is great for teaching idioms, homophones, and homonyms to kids using the humor. The main character of this book is continuously getting confused by what her parents mean when they use common figurative language phrases such as "forks in the road" and being "a little horse" when their throat is sore. The beautiful illustrations show what silly things she images they could possibly mean. The theme of this story is wordplay and it is ...more
Stephanie Watson
Nov 01, 2017 rated it liked it
A playful book that illustrates what a girl things when she hears a variety of homophonic idioms (such as picturing a blue-colored prince when she hears "blueprints"). Both text and illustrations are cute and fun, though a few of them are difficult/a bit mismatched for kids (sheep gambling on the lawn or the head on Dad's beer). A good choice to pair with "Dear Deer" by Gene Barretta.
Michael Rich
Jan 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Very cool! I enjoyed the idea that children take things literally and do not always understand expressions and their meanings. It was very sarcastic and humorous and I believe would be very entertaining for children. Also, the illustrations were amazing and detailed! The humor is what sold it for me, overall!
Feb 02, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: el-ed-340
+ fun play on words, kids would find it funny, kids can come up with their own and illustrate it
- some of them I would probably skip (some outdated phrases that I didn't get), because of the number of pages that I would skip it makes this book pretty short, besides homophones I don't know what I'd use the book for
Dec 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s
Delightful wordplay with homophones, written from the perspective of a child who doesn't understand them. I was enjoying myself too much to make a thorough analysis, so I'd like to take another look at some point.
Dec 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Quite a punny book with the proper accompanying illustrations.
Jun 02, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: for-alena
Funny, like the others by Fred Gwynne.
Apr 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I LOVED this book as a kid. Is it any wonder I turned out to be an English major? LOL.
Miss Sarah
a young girl goes through her day repeating all the phrases her parents say to her and illustrates them with the pictures the syaings create in her mind. Preschool and up for complexity
Mrs. Ruigrok
The illustrations in this book are rather dated now but kids will love the play on words.
Paige Dan
Jul 31, 2018 rated it it was ok
Some homophones, but this book is too dated to be extremely useful now.
Sep 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: tch_lrn-544
I am a lover of puns and this book takes the cake! My daughter inherited this book and it is a staple of laughter in her home library. The author takes sayings and other phrases along with a picture that illustrates what is said. Some of the photos appear outlandish, but it makes the reader visualize what is being said [especially if those phrases/sayings are said often]. A fun book to read!
Feb 17, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
Shelves: 2012, childrens
This is a funny book; it's a book that has been recommended for its merits, not just because of the celebrity status of the author. It's not really a story, but really a series of witticisms and idioms in the English language that might confuse anyone who hadn't heard them their whole lives. When we read this book, we described these phrases as things that would make Amelia Bedelia do something quite silly. The illustrations are quite fun and the only issue I had at all was that our girls ...more
Feb 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
I thought this book was full of hilarious wordplay and matching illustrations, Fred Gwynne keeps readers of all ages laughing! In the Book, A little girl explains all the odd things she hears her mother and father say. While her parents are using clear Homophones, the young girl has no clue of such. The illustrations are done from her perspective, which are total off of what her parents meant but are what you would expect from a small child’s confusion.
The ending of the book was a bit of a cliff
May 25, 2015 rated it liked it
The King Who Rained by Fred Gwynne gets a lot of attention because of Mr. Gwynne's life as an actor. The book itself uses homophones and idioms to show life from a child's ears/eyes. I used this book in 5th grade when an upcoming unit had a lot of word play in it. The students took to its humor but some of the word play was over their heads. For example, "Daddy said their is a head on his beer." was a concept all my students didn't understand and one that I was not particularly eager to explain ...more
Oct 04, 2011 rated it liked it
I used this book for a lesson on multiple meaning words. I did however, skip over the beer and gambling page because I didn't find that appropriate for in-school lessons. I think that I would just glue those pages together if I actually owned the book, because I don't really think either reference is appropriate for school age children. However, I did think that the illustrations were colorful and that they showed how words can be misunderstood, and have multiple meanings. The children in my ...more
Catherine Boddie
A favorite from my childhood, I read this funny little book over and over. I love the wordplay and adorable illustrations. The facial expressions of the little girl are some of the best parts of the book. And the fact that it was written and illustrated by Herman Munster just makes it that much more awesome!

This would be great for slightly older children (preschool - first or second grade) that are learning about homophones. It addresses the topic in a fun way that opens the way for discussion
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Fred Gwynne was a well-known actor in addition to being a renowned children's author. Best known as Herman Munster from the sitcom The Munsters, Gwynne's books such as The King Who Rained and A Chocolate Moose for Dinner employed clever homonym wordplay for lighthearted humor that have delighted children for generations. Altogether, Gwynne published nine books over a long career.