An unsuccessful knockoff of The Runaway Bunny and Guess How Much I Love You.
A raccoon tells its cub how much it is loved in first-person rhymed verse. “I love you, I love you, above all the rest. / If you were a bird, I’d be your nest.” While Rudi’s verse is fluid, it has been done to death. Beeke’s richly colored paintings on grained and textured paper do well in the stage-setting scenes of the raccoon and cub together but fall apart in most of the forced, fanciful analogies of parental love. “If you were a squirrel, I’d be your tree” depicts a squirrel peeping out of a hole in a hollow tree; above the hole is a rudimentary happy face, complete with pink cheeks, and a twig circles round to “hug” the squirrel. Particularly cumbersome is the second-to-last spread, which depicts several pairings, such as cone and ice cream, salt and pepper, and needle and thread, but it is not at all clear who is meant to be the parent and who the child.
A derivative work in a market already oversaturated with similar titles. (Board book. 18 mos.-3)