cover image I WANT TO SAY I LOVE YOU


Caralyn Buehner, , illus. by Jacqueline Rogers. . Penguin Putnam/Fogelman, $16.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-8037-2547-8

Employing imagery both sweet and humorous, Buehner (Fanny's Dream) captures a mother's expression of unconditional love for her child in this warm picture book. A series of seemingly small moments between mother and child ("When I call you to get up and you clatter down the stairs,/ With your eyes still blinking sleep, and your porcupine-ish hair,/ I love you.") add up to a free-flowing text bursting with tender, occasionally sappy, emotion. Rogers (Weird Pet Poems) catches the easy rhythm in cheerful mixed-media compositions—an exuberant blend of earth-toned torn-paper collage and acrylic paints that marks a departure for the artist. Her scenes depict the pair in a number of everyday situations that radiate universal appeal. This affectionate volume, especially if read with a parent, will leave readers feeling as though they have just received a hug. Ages 3-6. (Jan.)