Waking from a nap, a child is shocked to find that Mommy, who had been cuddled with the child on the couch, is missing and sets off with orange tabby Max to try and find her.
The child picks up clues such as Mommy’s slippers, reading glasses, and scarf during the search. While Max finds Mommy right away, it takes the puzzled child a little longer. Readers will likely find Mommy as quickly as Max does, making them feel like they are in on a secret. A part of the appeal of this early reader geared toward rising first graders is that children are likely to relate to that sense of panic and concern the child experiences upon noticing that Mommy is gone—and the sense of relief when Mommy is finally found. The illustrations are crisp, page-filling, and colorful, and both the protagonist and Max have expressive faces. The use of white space makes the large, sans-serif type easy to follow and read. The text is patterned, aiding decoding: “Here are her slippers. / Here are her glasses.” Additionally, there are many different visual patterns incorporated into the illustrations, like stripes, polka dots, and checks, which readers can identify after the story to help reinforce early math skills. The same can be said for the many animals, colors, and shapes throughout the book as well. Mommy and child both present black.
This hardworking early reader is definitely worth checking out. (Early reader. 5-7)