cover image Will You Still Love Me?

Will You Still Love Me?

Carol Roth, , illus. by Daniel Howarth. . Albert Whitman, $15.99 (24pp) ISBN 978-0-8075-9114-7

Displacement anxiety isn't the sole domain of humans. In this story, a lot of junior members of the animal kingdom—from polar bear cubs to the tiniest mouse—fret over what a new sibling will do to the family dynamic: “Said the bunny to his mother, just as sweetly as could be,/ 'When the baby bunnies comes, will you still love me ?' ” Of course, is the reassuring answer across all species. “You're my moon and my sun,” quacks a mother duck to her duckling. “And there's room for me to love you all... each and every one.” Ostensibly, there's nothing surprising about Roth's (All Aboard to Work—Choo Choo! ) direct, openhearted couplets or Howarth's (Hoppy Hanukkah! ) cheery pastoral scenes, with their sweet echoes of mother-child activity (gardening, shopping, cuddling)—even the title could be applied to any number of books. But there's a sophisticated level of expertise at work, evincing the ability to ladle on reassurance without being sappy or boring. Both grownups and kids should find that its appeal has plenty of staying power—at least nine months' worth. Ages 2–5. (Mar.)