Bad Baby Brother

Bad Baby Brother

by Martha Weston
Tessa is ready to play with her brand-new baby brother, but Willy is no fun at all. He won't look at her book or admire her toys. And Mom and Daddy never get mad at him even when he's bad!


Tessa is ready to play with her brand-new baby brother, but Willy is no fun at all. He won't look at her book or admire her toys. And Mom and Daddy never get mad at him even when he's bad!

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Susie Wilde
Weston deals with the sibling downside as Tessa explains the exasperation that can come with a new crying baby who grows into a meddler. The text is sibling sympathetic, but the illustrations sometimes picture an overzealous older sibling, who, by the last picture is "reading" to her toddler brother...together they've arrived!
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1A clever look at an age-old problema big sister who is impatient with a new sibling. William won't look at Tessa's book or her dolly; he's either eating, sleeping, or being bathed. The girl reaches her breaking point when the baby begins crawling and attacks her beloved doll's foot with his sticky, wet mouth. She gets even more upset when her mother doesn't respond to the situation the way she would like her toby getting mad at William. Instead, the baby is put to bed for a nap and Tessa spends some "big kid's" time alone with her mother. Tessa promises her brother that he too will one day be big enough for stories; the last page shows her and an older Willy sharing a chair and a book together. The pictures and the text are seamless. The panel art incorporates bits of dialogue. Weston effectively uses watercolors and colored pencils to create feelings of joy, anger, love, and acceptance in the faces of her characters. Pair this with Martha Alexander's Nobody Asked Me If I Wanted a Baby Sister (Dial, 1977) and When the New Baby Comes, I'm Moving Out (Dial, 1979; o.p.) for a delightful trio on the trials and tribulations of being an older sibling.Lisa Marie Gangemi, Sousa Elementary School, Port Washington, NY
Kirkus Reviews
An adequate look at the arrival of a baby brother, told from a precocious older sister's perspective.

Willy is "very new and very sleepy." He doesn't know how to look at a book, play with a doll, dress up for Halloween or help fix Thanksgiving dinner. In fact, Tessa thinks Willy is messy and cries a lot and does terrible things like suck Dolly's toe. All the common feelings of anger, frustration, jealousy, and the need for attention associated with a new sibling are touched on in Tessa's realistic relationship with Willy. "I am very tired of babies," she says, attempting to articulate her confusion (her face and posture, however, are far more expressive than mere words). All is well in babyland, when her mother comes to the rescue with a reassuring hug for the big girl and the promise of reading a book together. It's a fairly standard ending to a typical tale of sibling discord, fluidly paced but still too familiar. Weston (Bea's 4 Bears, 1992, etc.) emphasizes the older sister's concerns by inserting dialogue into the frames of watercolor and colored-pencil pictures.

Product Details

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
9.01(w) x 8.29(h) x 0.35(d)
290L (what's this?)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Martha Weston was the author and illustrator of two charming picture books about Tuck, as well as the illustrator of Clarion's successful Owen Foote books by Stephanie Greene. Martha Weston died in 2003.

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