Jenkins and Page find yet another inviting way to connect young human readers and listeners to creatures who share their world, presenting 22 baby animals that describe their very first day of life.
From the kiwi that kicked its way out of its egg to the polar bear cuddled up with its mother snug and warm under the snow, each page or spread reveals an animal’s initial independence and the level of parental care. There’s a splendid variety, from familiar tigers and giraffes to capybaras and megapodes—even a parent bug, which gets its name because the mother, unlike most insects, stays around to guard her young larvae. The focus of Jenkins’ cut-and-torn paper illustrations is on the babies, each shown against a plain background whose color may represent something of its world. Sometimes the parent is visible or partially visible. A short paragraph of read-aloud text appears on the page along with a tiny label. The backmatter reintroduces each animal with further information about where it can be found, how big it will get to be and other behaviors. While the authors have a splendid track record, it would still be nice to have sources or at least an acknowledgement that an animal expert had vetted these facts.
Appealing to a wide age range, this is another crowd pleaser. (Informational picture book. 2-7)