A celebration of baby love as it’s carried out all over the world.

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HOW FAMILIES AROUND THE WORLD CARRY THEIR LITTLE ONES

Diverse caregivers and babies populate this picture-book depiction of caring and carrying.

Inclusivity is a hallmark of this book, but it stumbles a bit at the outset by naming two regions alongside nations: “From West Africa to Peru, from Egypt to Canada’s Far North, from Korea to India, from Poland to China and Afghanistan…families carry their babies in many different ways.” Why not name a specific West African nation or culture? A specific Arctic people? Nevertheless, depictions of families in those places and in that order use detailed, striking cut-paper collages to consciously highlight and value diversity. For example, girls and women wear the hijab on the spreads for Egypt and Afghanistan, and the depicted Korean father uses a wheelchair while wearing his baby on his chest in a carrier. Some spreads are less invested in culturally specific modes than are others. The mother in West Africa, for example, simply carries her baby in her arms, and the Egyptian brother carries his baby sibling on his hip. Others, like what seems to be a depiction of an Inuit amauti in the North Canada spread, are culturally grounded. Repetition of the phrase “upsy-daisy, baby” threads through all interactions, culminating in a scene with a loving multiracial family in an unspecified waterside setting, where a sister picks up her baby sibling.

A celebration of baby love as it’s carried out all over the world. (Picture book. 2-4)

Pub Date: April 15, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-77147-176-3

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Owlkids Books

Review Posted Online: Feb. 4, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

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A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an...

I AM A BIG BROTHER

A little boy exults in his new role as big brother.

Rhyming text describes the arrival of a new baby and all of the big brother’s rewarding new duties. He gets to help with feedings, diaper changes, playtime, bathtime, and naptime. Though the rhyming couplets can sometimes feel a bit forced and awkward, the sentiment is sweet, as the focus here never veers from the excitement and love a little boy feels for his tiny new sibling. The charming, uncluttered illustrations convincingly depict the growing bond between this fair-skinned, rosy-cheeked, smiling pair of boys. In the final pages, the parents, heretofore kept mostly out of view, are pictured holding the children. The accompanying text reads: “Mommy, Daddy, baby, me. / We love each other—a family!” In companion volume I Am a Big Sister, the little boy is replaced with a little girl with bows in her hair. Some of the colors and patterns in the illustrations are slightly altered, but it is essentially the same title.

A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an older sibling can do to help. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Jan. 27, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-545-68886-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: March 17, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2015

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A must-read for mothers of young children (and their kids, too).

MAMA NEEDS A MINUTE

The story shows all of the ways a mother loves and cares for her children while also needing to take care of herself.

Sloan writes what mothers feel: “This mama needs a minute.” There are books that prepare children for their first day of school, potty training, siblings, and many of life’s earliest milestones. In that tradition, Sloan’s book shows kids how mothers can both love and care for them and also need a little space. She writes, “It doesn’t mean I love you less. Sometimes it just means Mama needs to get dressed.” Truer words have never been written. Sloan simultaneously affirms a mother’s love while also deftly explaining that it’s OK for love to need boundaries—for parents, yes, but also for kids. The comics-style illustrations hit home, like the stubble-legged mama trying to snag a minute to shower. This goes beyond ringing chords with adult readers; it also provides concrete examples of when mama needs that minute. The palette includes pinks, greens, and bright blues, and all of the characters have skin of many nonhuman colors; hair is likewise fancifully colored but always straight. Many of the moms have visible tattoos, a refreshingly realistic detail.

A must-read for mothers of young children (and their kids, too). (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Feb. 4, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-5248-5457-7

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing

Review Posted Online: Jan. 21, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2020

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