There's a Baby in There!
Dandi Daley Mackall, illus. by Carlynn Whitt. Amazon Children's Publishing, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-7614-6191-3
A young chimp is doubtful that there's a baby inside his pregnant mother's stomach, and with good reason: "I was in there once, four years ago. I didn't see anybody else." When the boy's father assures him that he'll be getting a new playmate, the chimp envisions playing ball with his baby brother. But his grandmother's prediction that the baby is a girl elicits a far less palatable image: that of the scowling chimp having a tea party with his sister. The chimp's ingenuous voice and skepticism give Mackall's (Listen to the Silent Night) story a wily edge that many books about soon-to-be siblings lack. Also refreshing is newcomer Whitt's bustling mixed-media art. Bold colors, textures, and patterns intermingle in jungle scenes that parrot the narrator's change of mood as he accepts the prospect of a new baby, pitches in to help prepare for her arrival, and welcomes her into his world. A playfully affirming book for reluctant prospective siblings. Ages 4%E2%80%938. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 10/22/2012