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All Kinds of Families!
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All Kinds of Families!

by Mary Ann Hoberman, Marc Boutavant (Illustrator)
 

With irresistible, rollicking rhyme, beloved picture book author Mary Ann Hoberman shows readers that families, large and small, are all around us. From celery stalks to bottle caps, buttons, and rings, the objects we group together form families, just like the ones we are a part of. And, as we grow up, our families grow, too.

Mary Ann Hoberman gives readers a

Overview

With irresistible, rollicking rhyme, beloved picture book author Mary Ann Hoberman shows readers that families, large and small, are all around us. From celery stalks to bottle caps, buttons, and rings, the objects we group together form families, just like the ones we are a part of. And, as we grow up, our families grow, too.

Mary Ann Hoberman gives readers a sense of belonging in this all-inclusive celebration of families and our role in them.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Hoberman's (A House Is a House for Me) whimsical rhyming treatise on what constitutes a family will have children looking for myriad ways to use that classification. “Eggs in a carton can seem like a family/ So can a loaf with its slices of bread/ Celery stalks or a big bunch of carrots/ They sleep in the fridge with a drawer for a bed.” The playful verses (“Clams in the sea make a clammily family/ Lambs in the field make a lambily family...”) posit that any grouping can be termed a family, which has the effect of reducing the idea of family to little more than proximity. Small surprises and vibrant colors give Boutavant's digital artwork visual appeal—tiny faces appear on everything from rocks to shells to food, and in one scene leaves on a tree are actually letters and symbols. The 1970s-era retro feel of the art, a fresh counterpoint to the earnest prose, should appeal to kids and hipster parents alike. Readers will close the book with a sense of belonging, though the question of why may be less clear. Ages 3–6. (Aug.)
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3—Hoberman has tackled the elusive question of what makes a family a family in this sometimes silly, sometimes serious book of rhymes. She likens families to numerous items that share a relationship and are inherently the same. Her refrain says it all, "Bottle caps, gingersnaps, buttons, or rings/You can make families from all sorts of things!" Other families include tools, balloons, thimbles, and marbles, but the verses make it clear that human families are much more than a conglomeration of like, easily categorized, things; they share a human history and the promise of many more families to come. No matter what, making a family is about seeing the likenesses, not the differences. Boutavant provides colorful illustrations that vary from page to page, but as a group, complement the rhymes. Pair this with Jusin Richardson and Peter Parnell's And Tango Makes Three (S & S, 2005), Arnold Adoff's Black Is Brown Is Tan (HarperCollins, 2002); Nancy Coffelt's Fred Stays with Me! (Little, Brown, 2007), and Remy Charlip's A Perfect Day (HarperCollins, 2007) to introduce the idea that, indeed, there are all kinds of families.—Joan Kindig, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA
Kirkus Reviews
Readers who approach this title expecting a 21st-century love-makes-a-family message overtly embracing adoptive, queer, blended and other diverse family constellations will be disappointed. Instead of approaching "all kinds of families" in this way, however, the author riffs on "family" as a synonym for "group," describing not only human relationships but placing inanimate objects, animals and other things into family groups. The result is vintage Hoberman: Clever, rhyming wordplay mining a single concept for all it's worth and a singsong cadence that begs to be read aloud combine to produce a text reminiscent of earlier collaborations with Betty Fraser in A House is a House for Me (1978) and The Cozy Book (1999). French artist Boutavant's stylized, digitally produced illustrations are a clear departure from Fraser's watercolors, but they share a high attention to detail, inviting children to pore over pictures for new discoveries on every page opening. (Picture book. 4-7)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780316146333
Publisher:
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication date:
08/01/2009
Pages:
40
Sales rank:
262,100
Product dimensions:
8.80(w) x 11.20(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

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Meet the Author

Children's Poet Laureate Mary Ann Hoberman is the author of more than thirty-five books for children, including the critically acclaimed A House Is a House for Me, which won a National Book Award, the New York Times bestselling You Read to Me, I'll Read to You, and the Sing-Along Stories series.

Marc Boutavant has created picture books in English, French, and Japanese. He also does editorial illustration and comics. Mr. Boutavant lives in Paris.

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