The book amply demonstrates that “hugging makes us family.” (Picture book. 2-5)

ONE HUG

One family’s reunion is celebrated through many types of hugs.

As with many books on the topic, this one surveys the many types of hugs in the world: “Some hugs nuzzle nose to nose. / Some hugs lick and tickle toes.” But in contrast, Moore and Woolf offer readers something more. As the pages turn, the Asian nuclear family of a mom, dad, and two children anticipates and prepares for what is clearly a long-awaited reunion with family that has flown in: a grandmother and another couple with their own three children. “Some hugs wait for years and years. // Some hugs cradle falling tears.” The excitement is catching, and readers would need hearts of stone not to be moved by the family togetherness on display. They have a picnic feast (both typical American picnic food such as hot dogs and hamburgers and Asian dishes like dumplings and noodles) and spend the evening catching fireflies, which then—troublingly—provide a night light for the five children cozied up in a backyard tent. (The top is not visible, so readers will go on wondering about air holes.) The loosely cartoony illustrations are filled with charming details that give clues as to what is happening, and by the end, readers will be searching out hugs of their own.

The book amply demonstrates that “hugging makes us family.” (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: Dec. 10, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-06-284954-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Katherine Tegen/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Oct. 9, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2019

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A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an...

I AM A BIG BROTHER

A little boy exults in his new role as big brother.

Rhyming text describes the arrival of a new baby and all of the big brother’s rewarding new duties. He gets to help with feedings, diaper changes, playtime, bathtime, and naptime. Though the rhyming couplets can sometimes feel a bit forced and awkward, the sentiment is sweet, as the focus here never veers from the excitement and love a little boy feels for his tiny new sibling. The charming, uncluttered illustrations convincingly depict the growing bond between this fair-skinned, rosy-cheeked, smiling pair of boys. In the final pages, the parents, heretofore kept mostly out of view, are pictured holding the children. The accompanying text reads: “Mommy, Daddy, baby, me. / We love each other—a family!” In companion volume I Am a Big Sister, the little boy is replaced with a little girl with bows in her hair. Some of the colors and patterns in the illustrations are slightly altered, but it is essentially the same title.

A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an older sibling can do to help. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Jan. 27, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-545-68886-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: March 17, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2015

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Although a bit on the slight side, this offering is infused with a warm, light humor just right for cuddling up with a young...

THE BIGGEST KISS

This title previously published in the U.K. takes a cozy look at all kinds of kisses.

Walsh’s rhyming text is full of cutesy rhythms: “Kisses on noses, kisses on toes-es. Sudden kisses when you least supposes.” Sometimes the phrasing stumbles: “Who likes to kiss? I do! I do! Even the shy do. Why not try, too?” But toddlers and young preschoolers will probably not mind. They will be too engaged in spotting the lively penguin on each spread and too charmed by Abbot’s winsome illustrations that fittingly extend the wording in the story. Patient dogs queue up for a smooch from a frog prince, cool blue “ ’normous elephants” contrast strikingly with bright red “little tiny ants” and a bewildered monkey endures a smattering of lipstick kisses. Be the kiss small or tall, one to start or end the day, young readers are reminded that “the very best kiss… / is a kiss from you!” Perhaps no big surprise but comforting nonetheless.

Although a bit on the slight side, this offering is infused with a warm, light humor just right for cuddling up with a young tyke or sharing with a gathering for storytime.     (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: Dec. 20, 2011

ISBN: 978-1-4424-2769-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Paula Wiseman/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Nov. 20, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2011

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