GRUMP by Janet S. Wong


by , illustrated by
Age Range: 2 - 5
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A weary mom and her tireless tot are the subject of Wong’s (This Next New Year, 2000, etc.) humorous and poignant tale. The scenario is familiar: a mom, tired and slightly crabby, eagerly awaits baby’s naptime. However, her energetic infant has other ideas. Lunch becomes a science experiment as baby mixes this and that, eventually deciding to wear the concoction rather than eat it. After an exasperated Mom cleans up, she marches baby upstairs for a nap. Naturally, just as mother reaches the nursery door, baby awakens. The conclusion is predictable—at least for sleep-deprived parents—and the mother falls asleep reading baby a story while baby remains cheerfully awake . . . until snuggling up on her lap for a comfy snooze. Wong hits upon a universal truth of motherhood: as mom’s energy wanes, baby’s waxes accordingly. Her short, gently repetitive verses neatly capture the swinging moods between infant and parent. Although young children are unlikely to catch the wry humor, beleaguered mommies may appreciate the jests. Wong’s imagery has high giggle appeal for gleeful tots, making the poetry accessible for the littlest listener: “Mommy’s stomping / Jumping, chomping / Long arms dragging like a chimp.” Wallace’s watercolors adroitly capture the nuances of the story, depicting both the increasingly frenzied dismay of mom as well as the sweeter, more sentimental moments. An enjoyable romp for little ones and a compassionate reassurance for their exhausted parents. (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: March 1st, 2001
ISBN: 0-689-83485-3
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: McElderry
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1st, 2001


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