A welcome mirror for rainbow families.

TUESDAY IS DADDY'S DAY

Initially upset about a broken routine, a child gets a special surprise.

A long-haired, brown-skinned child thinks they’re “lucky” because having split parents means two rooms: a pink room at Daddy’s and a blue room at Mommy’s. As the endpapers’ sticker-decorated calendar reveals, the child’s schedule gets a little complicated as they shuffle back and forth among households and school. But wherever they go, they bring Daisy, their blue stuffed dog, with them. Whether with Mommy or with Daddy and his partner Harry, there’s no shortage of fun (and a little yucky broccoli). One Tuesday, the child is supposed to be with Daddy but Mommy shows up at school instead. Mommy says “Daddy had something special to do today.” That makes the child—and Daisy—mad. Where could Daddy be? And what is the special surprise? Using different solid-color backgrounds, Kreloff effectively compares and contrasts the child’s routines at their two homes. The childlike cartoon drawings combine thick pencil lines with collage, making the human figures pop on the page. Taking place after a separation has already occurred, the story delightfully normalizes and affirms co-parenting. Still, the child’s first-person narration and illustrations do tilt a bit in Daddy’s favor. Both Mommy and Daddy have brown skin; Harry presents White. (This book was reviewed digitally with 11-by-17-inch double-page spreads viewed at 39.1% of actual size.)

A welcome mirror for rainbow families. (new puppy instructions) (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: May 11, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-8234-4891-3

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: March 17, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2021

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Plotless and pointless, the book clearly exists only because its celebrity author wrote it.

YOUR BABY'S FIRST WORD WILL BE DADA

A succession of animal dads do their best to teach their young to say “Dada” in this picture-book vehicle for Fallon.

A grumpy bull says, “DADA!”; his calf moos back. A sad-looking ram insists, “DADA!”; his lamb baas back. A duck, a bee, a dog, a rabbit, a cat, a mouse, a donkey, a pig, a frog, a rooster, and a horse all fail similarly, spread by spread. A final two-spread sequence finds all of the animals arrayed across the pages, dads on the verso and children on the recto. All the text prior to this point has been either iterations of “Dada” or animal sounds in dialogue bubbles; here, narrative text states, “Now everybody get in line, let’s say it together one more time….” Upon the turn of the page, the animal dads gaze round-eyed as their young across the gutter all cry, “DADA!” (except the duckling, who says, “quack”). Ordóñez's illustrations have a bland, digital look, compositions hardly varying with the characters, although the pastel-colored backgrounds change. The punch line fails from a design standpoint, as the sudden, single-bubble chorus of “DADA” appears to be emanating from background features rather than the baby animals’ mouths (only some of which, on close inspection, appear to be open). It also fails to be funny.

Plotless and pointless, the book clearly exists only because its celebrity author wrote it. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: June 9, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-250-00934-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Feiwel & Friends

Review Posted Online: April 15, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2015

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A visually striking, engaging picture book that sends the message that everyone counts.

ONE FAMILY

A playful counting book also acts as a celebration of family and human diversity.

Shannon’s text is delivered in spare, rhythmic, lilting verse that begins with one and counts up to 10 as it presents different groupings of things and people in individual families, always emphasizing the unitary nature of each combination. “One is six. One line of laundry. One butterfly’s legs. One family.” Gomez’s richly colored pictures clarify and expand on all that the text lists: For “six,” a picture showing six members of a multigenerational family of color includes a line of laundry with six items hanging from it outside of their windows, as well as the painting of a six-legged butterfly that a child in the family is creating. While text never directs the art to depict diverse individuals and family constellations, Gomez does just this in her illustrations. Interracial families are included, as are depictions of men with their arms around each other, and a Sikh man wearing a turban. This inclusive spirit supports the text’s culminating assertion that “One is one and everyone. One earth. One world. One family.”

A visually striking, engaging picture book that sends the message that everyone counts. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: May 26, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-374-30003-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Frances Foster/Farrar, Straus & Giroux

Review Posted Online: Feb. 3, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2015

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