I’ve got more Mother’s Day books for the big day, but first, Everything Is Mama Activity Pages from Jimmy Fallon’s publisher, Macmillan! Enjoy three pages of activities and coloring with the kiddos!
What the Road Said, by Cleo Wade/Illustrated by Lucie de Moyencourt, (March 2021, Feiwel & Friends), $18.99, ISBN: 9781250269492
If loving advice for living a good life could be summed up in verse, What the Road Said is it. Poet, activist, and one of Marie Claire’s 50 Most Influential Women in America Cleo Wade reminds young and grown readers alike to pay attention to the journey, not the destination. Sometimes, you may think you’re on the wrong path: keep going; “sometimes we go the wrong way on the way to the right way”. You may not always move forward, and you may need help on the way or feel alone. Keep going, the poem urges. Lead with kindness and love, even when met with hate, and just keep going. Illustrator Lucie de Moyencourt’s watercolor and ink artwork begins with an urban landscape, with nature scenes painted on buildings; a child watches them as they walk, and the city streets give way to lush, green pastures, beaches, dark forests, mountains, even outer space, the child following paths up mountains and through the woods; standing triumphant on the top of the world, and meditating on the growth from a caterpillar to a butterfly. Together, Cleo Wade and Lucie de Moyencourt encourage readers to reach for the stars on their journey through life. These comforting, inspiring words and artwork are the perfect story to pass to your little ones and they’re the words we parents need sometimes, because, as Cleo Wade states in her author’s note, “Being a grownup is hard and the Road reminds me to take it one day at a time”.
I Love You, Baby Burrito, by
Angela Dominguez, (January 12, 2021, Roaring Brook Press), $18.99, ISBN:
This book is ADORABLE. A set of new parents greet their new baby – swaddled like a burrito – in this bilingual book of pure joy. Tender images of parents and baby pair with images of a new bird family in a nest outside the family’s window. The parents gaze, hold, and swaddle their little one, marveling at their new bundle, taking such care with every moment. Spanish words are in bright green, and English prose repeats the phrase, helping emphasize terms in both languages. A glossary at the end provides phonetic pronounciation. Mixed media illustrations are soft, gently colored, giving a real feeling of those quiet moments when baby and parents are still getting to know one another. I can’t wait to read this to my library families. An excellent Mother’s Day gift or baby shower gift, too; consider pairing with Hayley Barrett and Juana Martinez-Neal’s Babymoon
Black Cat & White Cat, by Claire Garralon (June 2016, Sourcebooks Jabberwocky), $7.99, ISBN: 978-1-4926-3781-3
Recommended for 0-4
I just spotlighted Black Cat & White Cat yesterday, but today’s where I get to talk about actually reading and testing the book out at storytime. The story is simple and very sweet: Black Cats live in white houses. White Cats live in black houses. Black Cat and White Cat want to meet up and play, but Black Cat disappears when he goes to White Cat’s house, and vice versa. What can the two friends do to find a place that lets them have a great playdate? Strike out in search of a place that’s not too black or too white, naturally!
I LOVE this book. It’s perfect for a mixed storytime like my baby storytime, which ends up having a healthy combination of baby and toddler siblings all together. I explained to my parents that high contrast, black and white books are great for infants; they can best see these images. Older siblings get to enjoy a fun story about two friends in search of the perfect playdate while the littlest lapsitters enjoy the cutest images of cats and houses. The use of negative space is wonderful, especially when the friends try to visit one another – parts disappear! We see hind quarters and tails and cat feet; window cut-outs and stark trees add to the lonely atmosphere the cats feel as they try to make the most of a hide and seek playdate. When they finally arrive at a place just for them, it’s a surprise, a revelation, like stepping into Oz from Kansas. Beautiful, bright colors await the reader and the cats, and make for a very happy ending. My babies and my toddlers love this book, my 4 year-old loves this book, and I love this book.
For collections that see a lot of storytime action, particularly for babies and toddlers, this is a must-add. Put together a baby read-aloud with high contrast titles like Hello Animals, Hello Ocean Friends, and Hello Baby Animals for a fun, animal-friendly storytime with tons of fingerplay and song potential.