This sweet baby-animal book will prompt interactive reading between baby humans and their caregivers.
The anthropomorphic lamb dressed in a straw hat and lace-collared shirt that looks out at readers from the front cover is representative of other sweet critters who populate the pages of this picture book. But instead of simply presenting each adorable portrait, Cauley establishes a structural guessing-game pattern. Small illustrations of parts of an animal’s body appear at the edges on each recto, with accompanying text asking questions such as “Who has tall, spotted legs, / and a long, curvy tongue?” Then the page-turn reveals a verso illustration with the big-eyed face of the baby animal in question gazing out at readers. (“Hello, baby giraffe” is the accompanying text to the question quoted above.) A pastel palette reinforces the gentle tone of words and watercolor pictures, and the culminating spread shows the whole crowd of baby animals together in a peaceable kingdom of cuteness. “Oh, hello babies,” reads the text, implying that these babies are looking out at the baby readers.
Couldn’t-be-cuter Q-and-A for the ABCs set. (Picture book. 18 mos.-3)