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THIS NEW BABY by Teddy Jam


by Teddy Jam, illustrated by Virginia Johnson

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-1-55498-088-8
Publisher: Groundwood

A provocative musing on the transformative power of parenthood.

A nostalgic energy informs this lyrical lullaby to a newborn babe. Spacious watercolor scenes convey a tangible softness as the open-mouthed child nestles with Mama. Spoken from the parents' perspectives, haunting rhymes invest a tremendous amount of love into soothing, abstract reflections. "This new baby sleeps in my arms / like a moon sleeping on a cloud." Both male and female caregivers caress and rock their little one while lilting design elements, in Matisse-inspired spreads, add a spacious quality. While most images present a quiet intensity, one striking page depicts the fist-clenched baby in a full-blown cry; the text indicates the interdependent relationship between parent and child. “[M]y new baby's cry / chases old ghosts / back into the shadows.”

Undeniably beautiful, but also undeniably for parents rather than children, who will nevertheless enjoy the cuddling that comes with the reading. (Board book. 6 mos.-3)