This Mexican import explores the many ways animal moms take care of their babies.
Featuring seals, bears, owls, tigers, monkeys, cats, kangaroos, jabirus (a type of storklike bird), sheep, pigeons, and elephants, the text presents mostly animals that are well-known to lapsitters (though the stylized cat and sheep illustrations may give youngsters pause). Unfortunately, the uneven rhythm of the translation may cause the owners of those laps to stumble: “The tiger kitten is roaring / but his mom won’t get upset. / She knows his baby fangs / can’t bite anything yet.” And the text leans more toward the sweet than the factual: “Who’s got a pocket / without any pants / to take her joeys walking / from Australia to France?” Meanwhile, the mama sheep is proud to have knitted her lambkins their “sweaters.” The graphic black-and-white illustrations with pops of bright red, pink, light blue, or purple are sure to capture readers’ interest, though they may not hold it. Reminiscent of picture books from the 1970s, the artwork was made, in part, by inking interestingly textured objects and then pressing paper onto them, a technique children will want to try for themselves. Frottage, hand drawing, and computer techniques were also used to create the blocky, stylized animals that fill the pages.
Striking, retro-looking artwork cannot save the stumbling verses. (Picture book. 3-7)