THE NEWBIES by Peter Catalanotto


Age Range: 4 - 8
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There’s a new baby coming, and Luke worries about his place in the family’s changing configuration.

He loves all the special rituals with his parents. Eating pancakes on Saturdays and retelling stories of his past adventures are treasured times spent together. But now Mom is too tired, and Dad is painting the nursery. When Luke sees a pamphlet for “New Parents,” it triggers a “what if?” reverie. A bell rings, and there is an entirely new set of parents ready to devote themselves only to him. These Newbies play games, buy ice cream, tell stories, and even make pancakes, but nothing is quite right. Sandwiches are cut in squares instead of his preferred triangles, and New Dad doesn’t try to sneak some of Luke’s ice cream. They don’t get the nuances of games, and they certainly miss the mark with their version of puppy-ear pancakes. They can’t even tell stories right. He decides to stick with his real parents; he’ll even help paint the nursery. Catalanotto treats a well-explored theme with compassion and a different perspective, allowing Luke to tell his own tale, a device that captures his growing understanding and willingness to embrace the inevitable changes. Bright watercolor illustrations glow, beautifully complementing and enhancing the text with eye-catching details and expressive characterizations.

Comforting and reassuring. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: July 14th, 2015
ISBN: 978-1-4814-1892-8
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Atheneum
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 2015


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