Although images and sentiments are appealing, treacly, nonsensical text causes this book to fall short of the mark.

I LOVE YOU, LITTLE ONE

Successive animals tell their little ones how much they are loved.

Soft-edged and baby-friendly illustrations depict nine pairs of animals—a parent and a young one—in a lightly anthropomorphized style. In the first double-page spread, the day begins and a bear holds a cub high up in the air. It will be this same pair that will close the book in the last spread as night falls. In between readers will find pairs of dogs, birds, seals, elephants, rabbits, lions, foxes, and turtles. Accompanying each spread, rhyming text describes the action taking place: “Hopping, skipping rabbits / play a game of chase, / then nestle down together / in a happy, golden place.” A second stanza goes on to say how much the baby is loved, though in most cases rhyming seems to be more important than making sense; “As bright as the meadow, where dandelions sway, / I love you more and more each day.” Or “As soft as the grass, spreading near and far, / I love you just the way you are.” For no apparent reason, though perhaps to go with the touchy-feely rhyme, each spread has a touch-and-feel element as well.

Although images and sentiments are appealing, treacly, nonsensical text causes this book to fall short of the mark. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: March 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-58925-241-7

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: May 24, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2017

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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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Purchase for some temporary interactive Halloween fun.

MY MAGICAL WITCH

From the My Magical Friends series

Four green-faced witches fly through this durable board book looking for Halloween fun.

A turn of the notched wheel embedded in the cover page changes the sparkly stripes on a witch’s hat, cape, and broom. Three more witches join the fun inside. Though not identified by gender, all wear dresses. All the interactive elements are focused on the first witch, who wears fluffy orange hair in two pigtails. One slider simultaneously lifts a broom and plops a straight hat on top of that hair. Another slides the witch across the night sky. A second wheel shows the ingredients being added to a cauldron. A final slider magically produces three black cats. Two lines of (uncredited) rhyming text on each of the four double-page spreads hint at what the interactive element will reveal. While the text is conveniently placed in the same spot on each spread, the vocabulary is peppered with reach words for the toddler audience: “Off they swooped on whizzing brooms, / heading for the potions room.” Mice, pumpkins, spiderwebs, owls, brooms, bats, and other thematically appropriate objects and creatures scattered across the busy pages place the book firmly in the Halloween genre. Unnamed and primarily decorative, these seemingly arbitrary additions distract from the slight story thread. Toddlers will readily manipulate the five smoothly performing interactive elements; unfortunately, the text and pictures are not equally enticing.

Purchase for some temporary interactive Halloween fun. (Novelty board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Aug. 3, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-4197-4463-1

Page Count: 8

Publisher: Abrams Appleseed

Review Posted Online: Aug. 31, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2021

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