Rhyming text and exuberant art follow a little girl in an interracial family getting used to her status as big sister.
The narrator has brown skin and tightly curled black hair in small braids with bows. Her mother and baby brother share her skin color and hair texture, but her father, her grandmother, and a friend are white. Race is unmentioned in the text, which introduces the girl’s “baby big girl game,” in which she playfully regresses and tries to wear her old baby clothes and squeeze into her baby bed. Her parents lovingly affirm her big-girl status, and while she seems a bit conflicted, other spreads show her decided enjoyment at doing things her baby brother cannot. Several British words and phrases (“Mummy” and “nappy,” for example) are retained in the American edition of this picture book; this cultural specificity adds to its appeal, though there are times when the rhyme doesn’t work particularly well, and it never seems essential to the book’s success. A child’s narration is often difficult to achieve without a sense of adult ventriloquism, and the rhyme makes this yet more fraught.
A warm if at times stilted celebration of all things big girl. (Picture book. 2-4)