cover image My Mom Is a Lioness

My Mom Is a Lioness

Swapna Haddow, illus. by Dapo Adeola. Red Comet, $18.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-63655-063-3

“Mighty,” “imaginative,” “proud,” and “tireless” all describe a mother as a lioness in Haddow and Adeola’s latest, a playful follow-up to My Dad Is a Grizzly Bear. “She’s been chasing babies all day,” a child portrayed with brown skin narrates as Mom—a big cat wearing purple glasses and jeans—wrangles pants onto a toddler before going “on the hunt for bigger prey”—Mom’s white-presenting human partner. Further evidence abounds as the child employs feline-centric language. Pushing a stroller through a park, Mom “hunts in a pride” with other stroller-pushing runners. And, on the sidelines of a soccer game, she instructs on “how to pounce and how to leap higher than all the other cubs.” Adeola’s digital artwork, which portrays a human community with varying abilities and skin tones, eventually uncovers the grinning feline’s true form as a smiling human mother, portrayed with brown skin, and the adoring speaker summarizes with an emblematically loving tribute: “Her strong, warm lioness hugs make everything better.” Ages 4–8. (Apr.)