Written by Helen Foster James and illustrated by Petra Brown. Published by Sleeping Bear Press. published: Sept. 15, 2020 . ISBN: 978-1-53411-012-0
Coming out in a few days time... Sleeping Bear Press, Helen and I have once again collaborated over a new title, 'Welcome to the World!'
I absolutely adored working on this one. Not bunnies this time, but red squirrels! How can you not like red squirrels?
A baby's first year is filled with newness and wonder, from the sight of the sun filtering through leaves to the splash of water at bathtime to sweet snuggles with mom. This book celebrates all of baby's charming firsts and reminds us all of the miracles this life holds when seen through their very new eyes.
A single day, a first year—a lovely addition to little ones’ shelves. (Picture book. 0-4)
A family of red squirrels introduces a new baby to the waiting world in James and Brown’s latest collaboration. A single day of games and exploring stands also for a baby’s first year of discovery and family.
The day begins with yawns, sunshine, toys, and smiles. From there, the squirrel kit ventures outside to sing songs, dance, and play hide-and-seek. Back inside for bathtime bubbles, a snuggly story, and finally sleepy goodnights.
A quiet, parental voice narrates, addressing the baby directly, and the sparse text carries readers through a day of welcoming “hellos” ranging from pet names (“Hello, sunshine”; “Hello, cutie”) to words that capture the moment (“Hello, wiggles”; “Hello, cuddles”).
In typical fashion, Brown’s illustrations capture the sprawling fun of outdoor games as deftly as they do the quiet intimacy of a bedtime routine. Rich, warm tones of sunshine and ruddy fur invite readers to cozy up, whether in a lap or under covers or snuggled next to a new sibling.
Despite the predictably traditional family setup (clothing and accessories suggest an opposite-sex set of two parents), what could easily tumble into saccharine, shower-gift banality manages instead to convey the immediacy and timelessness of a delightful day with loving caregivers.