Mommy, Do You Love Me? written by Jeanne Willis, illustrated by Jan Fearnley
Do we absolutely need another Mommy-love book? Probably not, but when done by two such heavy-hitters as Willis and Fearnley, I’m willing to take a look. In this book, the little chick questions mommy’s love as he gets muddy, loses a race, ruins a present (by accident), and gets scolded. The “gets scolded” part is key, because as Little Chick gets too loud, his mom shouts at him to be quiet. He can’t believe his ears and worries that she doesn’t love him anymore. But of course she does, because she’s his mommy. Sweet book.
Puppies and Piggies, written by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Ivan Bates
This is a very simple farm book that would be most appropriate for the baby/toddler set, but could enjoy a return as an early beginning reader book. The rhymes are simple and sweet (“Kitty loves a garden, Kitty loves a rose, Kitty loves to walk up high, On her kitty toes.”) with the gentle pictures pulling the story of farm life together.
Bye-bye, Crib, written by Alison McGhee, illustrated by Ross MacDonald
It’s time for the little boy to become a big boy and leave his crib behind. But he’s worried about the big boy bed which seems huge and looks like a monster. Mom and Dad reassure the boy, and send his blankie and pillow over first to check it out. When his toy Baby Kitty is ready, then he’s ready and he makes the leap literally to the big boy bed. The illustrations have a retro fifties cartoon feel to them which is interesting. Another interesting choice is having the character talk to the reader. I wouldn’t call this my favorite book, and I don’t know that I’d buy this book as a parent, as its appeal is certain to be short-lived. However, I think that the issue of leaving the crib isn’t covered a lot in picture books, and this one is done well, making it a good purchase for a library.