A newborn baby is introduced to the beauty of nature season by season through rhyming text and accompanying charming illustrations.
The book opens with a striking double-spread illustration depicting a bright new day, a pale-skinned newborn baby, and the light over the ocean. From there, the gentle rhyme in a parent’s voice introduces the baby to the gift of the world: the seasons’ slow change, animals in their various habitats, and the progression of day into night. McCleary’s text reads like a lullaby, lilting gently despite occasional awkward phrasing. The rhyming couplets make it an ideal bedtime story: “I give to you the day that’s done, / the fading light, the sinking sun.” Saldaña’s inviting illustrations encourage readers to pause and admire. There are opportunities to look at tiny details that go beneath the text, such as frogs eating flies, deer in the distance, and ants crawling up a blade of grass. As a lovely way to bring the story full circle, the illustration of the ocean in the morning in the beginning is echoed by the moon rising over that same ocean at the end. This book narrowly dodges the cloyingly sweet thanks to these charming illustrations, the book’s greatest strength.
The delicate, rhyming text and gorgeous, warm illustrations make this a lovely book for snuggling up with a young child on a lap. (Picture book. 3-7)