WELCOME TO THE WORLD

A pleasant throwback, perhaps in more ways than one, to picture books of bygone days.

A British picture-book power coupling presents a new baby book replete with necessary messiness.

The reality of parenthood is celebrated in tandem with the idealization of new life. Gently rhyming text offers an introduction to its tiny intended audience. “Welcome to the world. / Welcome to the light. / Welcome to the day. / Welcome to the night.” Babies, toddlers, and preschoolers are invited to experience everything from bouncing on granny knees and listening to granddads playing guitars to ducks, bubbles, bananas, and more. The book is chock-full of funny moments for parents and kids, like the nonchalant parent snagging a bottle while a toddler attempts, unsuccessfully, to leap from the shopping cart. Oxenbury’s watercolor and gouache illustrations have lost none of their flair over the years, wonderfully capturing interactions between small children and parents that are sometimes less than picture-perfect. It’s a tale with an old-fashioned feeling and a more earnest outing than you might find in, for example, Oliver Jeffers’ Here We Are (2017), but it’s fun nevertheless. Yet while the cast is racially diverse and male-presenting characters are seen as caregivers as often as female-presenting ones, the spread saying, “Welcome to the girls. / Welcome to the boys,” with its emphasis on the gender binary, may limit the title’s appeal. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A pleasant throwback, perhaps in more ways than one, to picture books of bygone days. (Picture book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Jan. 31, 2023

ISBN: 978-1-66592-987-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Paula Wiseman/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Oct. 25, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2022

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I AM A BIG BROTHER

A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an...

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 16, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2015

PEPPA'S GIANT PUMPKIN

From the Peppa Pig series

This TV rerun in board-book form has nothing new to offer.

Peppa hopes to join her classmates in a Halloween pumpkin competition in this adaptation of a story from the popular British television program Peppa Pig.

With the help of Granny and Grandpa Pig, Peppa turns her giant pumpkin, which is the size of a compact car, into a jack-o’-lantern. The trio is flummoxed when it comes time to transport the pumpkin to the competition, so they call on Miss Rabbit and her helicopter to airlift the pumpkin to the festivities as Peppa and her grandparents ride inside. Peppa arrives just in time for the contest and wins the prize for best flying pumpkin. The scenes look as if they are pulled directly from the television show, right down to the rectangular framing of some of the scenes. While the story is literally nothing new, the text is serviceable, describing the action in two to three sentences per page. The pumpkin-shaped book and orange foil cover will likely attract youngsters, whether they are Peppa fans or not.

This TV rerun in board-book form has nothing new to offer. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 30, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-33922-2

Page Count: 10

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Sept. 23, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2019

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