Animal caregivers show affection for little ones with the help of sturdy movable flaps.
The titular “little moo” is a brown calf who appears on the opening double-page spread in a field facing away from an adult Holstein with horns and eyelashes. The calf is on a shaped flap, and when the flap is opened, the youngster appears to move back across the field to nuzzle its caregiver. On subsequent pages further animals are animated by the flip of a flap and given nicknames based on their sounds. A pig and a piglet (called “little oink) wallow in the mud; a duck enfolds two ducklings with its wings; a horse and foal gaze at each other; and a cat and kitten curl up together for bedtime. Each of these double-page spreads is accompanied by four lines of rhymed, sentimental verse with the final line appearing under the flap. Done in a harmoniously muted palette, Deo’s appealingly stocky, wide-eyed creatures and simplified backgrounds suit the feel of the text. Many of the young critters don’t match the coloring of their full-grown caregivers, allowing this title to work for families in a variety of configurations (children who were adopted, children in foster care, etc.). Toddlers will likely respond to the extra-sturdy flaps, which will survive robust interaction.
A thoughtful, versatile celebration of love that allows for playful toddler handling. (Board book. 6 mos.-3)