A stork-delivery mishap leads a baby across the globe before uniting with family.
Rhyming text reimagines baby delivery: “Babies arrive by different means, / on rickshaws, beasts or submarines.” But this child’s journey, as the parents affectionately explain, began with a distractible stork. Hungry, the winged creature stops for a snack only to lose its bundle to a croc. From whale to bear to dog sled and moose, the infant goes (and grows)—crawling, escaping, traveling, living. At last, the tot arrives home and into the loving arms of expectant parents. Dreamlike digital illustrations with painted collage perfectly match the text. There is a free-form waggishness that permeates the artwork, as the Brothers Hilts play with size, shape, and pattern in unconventional ways that work. Done in a sort of stream-of-consciousness style, fantastical stand-alone images weave together to bring the tale full circle. There is no evidence of an intent to mislead or skirt the age-old question of where babies come from; rather, the sensational nature of the work offers to take readers on delightful flights of fancy. The baby’s timeline from birth to joining parents who have long anticipated a child’s arrival also speaks to families who’ve adopted.
While the myth of stork delivery has recently been repopularized elsewhere, this visually stunning work stands apart. (Picture book. 3-7)