cover image Take Heart, My Child: A Mother’s Dream

Take Heart, My Child: A Mother’s Dream

Ainsley Earhardt, with Kathryn Cristaldi, illus. by Jaime Kim. Aladdin, $18.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-4814-6622-6

In her debut children’s book, Fox & Friends cohost Earhardt assumes the voice of a mother expressing her hopes for her daughter, advising her child to take risks and be independent. In a sequence of vignettes, the story moves from the sea to the forest and into the night sky, initially described in fanciful terms: “Before you were born/ Before you shared my day/ I dreamed a love song/ Near a grand deer ballet,” reads one spread as newcomer Kim shows a young woman and six deer prancing through a field. The light-dappled illustrations play well with the text’s ethereal references to nature, alternating between images of the mother-to-be on her own and ones of her daughter swinging from a tree, peering at the moon through a telescope, and flying a kite on the beach. Though the advice can be syrupy or overfamiliar (“May you take the high road/ Through the road may be long/ Pledge to follow your heart/ So your heart will grow strong”), Earhardt’s you-can-do-it message is consistently encouraging. Ages 4–8. [em]Illustrator’s agent: Claire Easton, Painted Words. (Nov.) [/em]