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SOPHIE AND THE NEW BABY by Laurence Anholt


by Laurence Anholt, illustrated by Catherine Anholt

Age Range: 3 - 7

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-8075-7550-X
Publisher: Whitman

The Anholts team up to present Sophie, who faces a common big-sibling dilemma. In the spring, she’s excited to hear about the baby that will come in winter and notifies her doll and other toys that they’ll have to move over because “someone important is coming soon.” She waits through spring and summer, so long that “sometimes she forgot all about the Winter Baby.” Fall arrives, and then the first snow of winter, which coincides with the birth of her brother. There is life after a sibling’s birth, but not like before. This baby wants a lot and he wants it “all right now.” Tired of his attention absorption, Sophie asks her mom, “When will he be going back again?” She’s shocked to hear the baby’s a permanent fixture, then frustrated in having to wait to play with him, and then infuriated sufficiently to dash out into the snowstorm and tell the world, “I don’t want that baby anymore!” Parental understanding and the passage of time ameliorate that sentiment; when spring returns, Sophie has moved to affectionate acceptance. Naïf, detailed illustrations underscore perfectly the reality of Sophie’s voice and emotions in a book that will reassure siblings of newborns. This is no Julius, the Baby of the World (1990), but it does accurately portray the waiting and subsequent adjustments that accompany this familiar event. (Picture book. 3-7)