A week in the life of an imaginative would-be animal doctor.
The Today I’m a… series of board books walks children through seven typical days of work in a given profession; publishing simultaneously are books about a construction worker, a race car driver, and a dancer. While the lead characters in the latter three books conform to conventional gender stereotypes, brown-skinned Dr. Emma and her unnamed male vet tech (called a “nurse”) do not. Each volume in the series does include other characters in nontraditional roles: female construction workers, male dancers, and a girl in the pit crew, for example. No ethnicities are specified, but the cast is racially diverse. The books are eye-catching and fun to handle; each is die cut in the shape of a happy child dressed for the book’s make-believe profession. They are simply formatted: The first page introduces the characters by name (“Hi, I’m Dr. Emma, and I’m a veterinarian”) and describes what happens on Monday; each facing page has an illustrated glossary of the clothing, furniture, office supplies, and equipment used in each profession. Each book uses sensible occupational vocabulary and teaches the days of the week. Dr. Emma treats house pets, farm animals, and the exotic animals at the zoo on Monday through Saturday. On Sunday, Dr. Emma stays home to read up on the latest developments in animal health care, setting an excellent example for aspiring veterinarians.
Both surprisingly charming and respectful of its readers. (Board book. 2-5)