Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Baby Books from Miss Ami

It was a three-day weekend, people. As in, take the weekend off. Like, for instance, go to a baby shower (more on that later). Not as in post so many times that those of us who follow your blogs spend half the day catching up on them! Sheesh.

Of course, the announcements of the Newbery, Caldecott and Prinze awards was certainly newsworthy, and making a display did take up a little of my time today, too. For a list of the honorees with a bit of commentary, click here

While I stayed off the blog for the weekend, part of it still centered around books. Saturday was the baby shower for the lump-on-her-way, and one of the suggested gift items was a copy of your favorite picture book. She already has The Paper Bag Princess by Robert Munsch, of course. Popular choices given as gifts were Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown, Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney, The Poky Little Puppy by Janette Lowrey, and The Monster at the End of This Book by Jon Stone.

The wonderful hostess had a great activity: everyone was given a sheet of stickers and asked to create a scene and short story about the baby-to-be. Some were sweet, some were hysterical, and all were put into a keepsake book that will be read over and over.

For some reason I don't get too many baby books to review, but I did recently receive a copy of Go Baby from Tricycle Press:

I love the fact that the name of the series is "Milestones Project Chewables", because that's what babies do with books, isn't it? Off the shelf and right into the mouth! I also love that photographs are used as illustrations. Many times board books are just smaller, harder versions of picture books. The llustrations may be perfect for a 4-year-old, but what babies respond to best are photos of other babies.

In this book, babies from all over the world are shown learning to crawl, stand and walk. The photographers make an obvious effort to include a wide variety of cultures/races/skin colors (and do I detect some Downs syndrome facial features?), even naming the country each child is from. Are babies going to care or understand that the cute little chunker in the sand is from Belize? No, but it's great that we can start them off seeing a rainbow of people, whether that is what their community looks like or not. (I also loved loved loved that the babies were not all perfectly coiffed, clothed and cleaned. A big thank-you from the real moms out here.) Definitely a series to add to our collection.

For more board books with great baby pictures, check out Margaret Miller, Roberta Intrater, Neil Ricklen, and Tom Arma. If you are buying for a library, buy multiple copies - board books or no, they won't last long on your shelves!

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