Central Park Serenade, reviewed bel"/>

WHAT THE BABY HEARS

Laura Godwin, Author, Mary Morgan-Vanroyen, Illustrator , illus. by Mary Morgan. Hyperion $15.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-7868-0560-0

"What the/ puppy/ hears —/ Lick, lick, lick/ What the/ beetle/ hears—click, click, click." Godwin's (Central Park Serenade, reviewed below) rhythmic, comforting chant explores the parent-child bond across familiar species. Rendered in watercolor and colored pencil, Morgan's (the Rosie series) sunlit full-bleed illustrations depict the grown animals and their offspring in loving poses. While she anthropomorphizes her subjects somewhat, her careful attention to detail gives the audience a good sense of the physical differences between younger and older animals. For example, a joey is tucked inside its mother's pouch as she bounds across the savanna. Elsewhere, an eye-level view presents tadpoles swimming underwater as the mother frog peeks above the surface of a pond. The final spread shows four toddlers bouncing at the knee of their guitar-playing caregiver: "What the/ baby/ hears—/ I love you!" The slightly undersize format (8½"×8½"), the up-close perspectives and the attractively laid out, large font all help invite readers into the book. Ages 2-5. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 02/25/2002
Release date: 04/01/2002
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