cover image Ten Days and Nine Nights: An Adoption Story

Ten Days and Nine Nights: An Adoption Story

Yumi Heo, . . Random/Schwartz & Wade, $16.99 (40pp) ISBN 978-0-375-84718-9

Simple, graceful text and images of contentment distinguish this story about the arrival of a younger adopted sibling. Heo's heroine is a girl with black hair and rosy cheeks who finds plenty to do as she waits for her mother to return from Korea with her new baby sister. “Daddy and I say goodbye to Mommy. I have nine days and eight nights.” As Mommy and the girl embrace at the airport gate, Heo's folk-naïve perspective makes the whole airport appear to swell with anticipation—even the colorful airplanes outside look happy. As the girl counts down (“I have six days and five nights,” etc.), rhythmic text confers a feeling of calm. On subsequent days, her father buys new furniture, and her grandmother sews for the baby, as wordless scenes show Mommy's progress in Korea. “At last!” the girl cries, as the family greets Mommy and the tiny bundle. “I have no days and no nights.” Heo (The Green Frogs ) writes as if the baby's arrival will be unambiguously joyous, and children who read this book will feel this way, too. Ages 4–8. (May)