cover image T.L.C.


M.H. Clark, illus. by Shahab Shamshirsaz. Compendium (APG, dist.), $16.95 (36p) ISBN 978-1-938298-42-4

An exhausted mother can’t drum up the energy to get up from the couch to play with her daughter. “Oh, sweetie,” the woman says, feet propped up on an ottoman, “I’m too tired. I could really use a little T.L.C.” Puzzled by the acronym, the girl makes some guesses—and messes—while trying to get her mother what she wants. Could it be a Tie-dyed Llama Cartwheeling? Or Trombone Loving Clowns? Italian illustrator Shamshirsaz has fun painting the mounting chaos, which eventually features swarms of ladybugs, a purple monster that resembles shag carpet, and a river of molten chocolate. Once the actual meaning of T.L.C. becomes clear to the girl, she’s happy to oblige. Though the misunderstandings go on a bit long, Clark and Shamshirsaz entertain while reminding readers that parent-child nurturing goes both ways. All ages. (Jan.)