cover image Oh, Baby!

Oh, Baby!

Sara Stein. Walker & Company, $14.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-8027-8261-8

Big, beautiful photographs of infants and toddlers will make this picture book just about irresistible to youngsters, who will be fascinated by the many peppy images of their peers. Beginning with images of a baby ``just born yesterday,'' the narrative lists the newborn's innate abilities, details some of the work involved in caring for an infant and then describes the baby's gradual progression from reaching to crawling to walking. A matter-of-fact photograph shows an infant nursing at his mother's partially revealed breast. The photographs, each outlined in crayon, feature Asian, African American, white and Latino babies, both female and male. Such care seems to have been taken to round up a multicultural group of youngsters that it comes as a surprise to find that although the photos feature numerous shots of five different women, only a single spread is devoted to a man playing with a child. The volume's disappointing final photo of a toddler sitting at an easel and holding a palette is a saccharine choice for a book otherwise filled with playful, candid-seeming images. Ages 3-6 . (Oct.)