Bye-Bye Baby Brother!

Overview

For every older sibling who has ever thought, "Hey, what about me?" and every parent who has ever used those magic words, "Just give me one minute."

Ruby loves nothing more than playing, especially with Mom. But Mom is always so busy with Oliver, Ruby’s baby brother — feeding him, changing him — and Ruby is tired of waiting. She has already looked at tons of books, but only Mom can do all the funny voices. Ruby has painted so many pictures and even dressed her dog, Rory, in a ...

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Overview

For every older sibling who has ever thought, "Hey, what about me?" and every parent who has ever used those magic words, "Just give me one minute."

Ruby loves nothing more than playing, especially with Mom. But Mom is always so busy with Oliver, Ruby’s baby brother — feeding him, changing him — and Ruby is tired of waiting. She has already looked at tons of books, but only Mom can do all the funny voices. Ruby has painted so many pictures and even dressed her dog, Rory, in a very fetching blue sweater. Babies are so boring! Maybe if Ruby puts her imagination to work, she can invent a way to make Oliver disappear to a place far, far away. Or would it be even more fun if she and Mom climbed aboard and went along for the ride?

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Editorial Reviews

The New York Times Book Review - Pamela Paul
Whatever the means, getting rid of a baby sibling is a powerful fantasy. Indulging it with this happy-ending tale, softened with pastel illustrations and a pig-tailed heroine, can't hurt.
Publishers Weekly
“It’s priceless,” goes the classic Charles Addams cartoon. “Normie’s building a rocket to shoot Pamela to the moon.” Dempsey, in her picture book debut, evokes a similar impulse in this displacement tale, although the mood and outcome are more benevolent. Ruby and her faithful dog, Rory, are miffed that baby Oliver is monopolizing Mommy’s time, and she imagines all kind of scenarios for ridding the household of him (“Maybe I could sell Oliver in a yard sale. If we give him a good wash, I bet someone will buy him”). When Ruby proposes a one-way trip to the moon for Oliver, her mother wisely suggests making it an imaginary outing for everyone—with Ruby as captain, of course. “Today, I really wished Oliver would disappear,” Ruby tells her mother after Oliver is down for the night. “But now... I think we should keep him a little bit longer.” Dempsey’s pretty, soft-line drawings and pastel palette may suggest a treacly experience, but she instead reveals emotional depth and a gentle but sure sense of visual humor. Ages 3–up. Agent: Penny Holroyde, Caroline Sheldon Literary Agency. (Apr.)
From the Publisher
While many versions of this familiar storyline are available, it’s Dempsey’s charming watercolor-and-pen illustrations that set this apart. The soft, pale hues against white backgrounds create tender scenes in a style that blends the wispy touch of Charlotte Voake and the sensibility of Jan Ormerod.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Children's Literature - Tima Murrell
Ruby does not like her little brother Oliver very much. All morning, Ruby has begged her mother to come play with her and the dog Rory. But mother is too busy taking care of Oliver. Irritated, Ruby decides to come up with a plan to get rid of her baby brother. Maybe she can sell him at a yard sale, or make him disappear in a magic act. But her best idea is when she decides to build a rocket ship to send him into space. As Ruby is finishing her rocket, mother comes out to play. Mother convinces her to allow Oliver to join them, and the three spend a wonderful afternoon together. That evening, Ruby decides she likes her brother after all. Adorable, soft illustrations help tell the story and convey the frustration of the little girl. Children will love the colorful pictures and concepts presented. This story is perfect for a child struggling with the invasion of a new sibling. Reviewer: Tima Murrell
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1—Feeling a bit ignored by her mother, who is too busy with the baby to play with her, Ruby attempts to pass the time with her ever-faithful mutt, Rory. Pastel watercolor and pen illustrations feature a household with one parent and two active children vying for her attention. Ruby and Rory color, play dress up, and look at books, but become more and more disgruntled-even the dog mumbles under his breath-about being left to their own devices. Ruby begins to imagine a variety of ways to rid her home of Oliver until her mother thinks of a way for the four of them to play together, but with Ruby in charge. Charming pictures of a warm and loving family are the highlight of this gentle tale of a universal predicament.—Maryann H. Owen, Racine Public Library, WI
Kirkus Reviews
What older sister hasn't wanted to make her baby brother disappear? Every time Ruby asks her mom if it's time to play, she's putting a diaper on Oliver, fixing his lunch or feeding him. Ruby tries reading and dressing up her dog, Rory, but it's not the same without Mom. Ruby, with Rory at her side, waves her magic wand (a stick) to imagine making the baby disappear; she also imagines hiding him in the cabbages at the supermarket, putting him in a yard sale, and--her best idea--building a rocket and sending him to the moon. Best of all is when Mom joins in the space adventure. While many versions of this familiar storyline are available, it's Dempsey's charming watercolor-and-pen illustrations that set this apart. The soft, pale hues against white backgrounds create tender scenes in a style that blends the wispy touch of Charlotte Voake and the sensibility of Jan Ormerod. Details add dashes of humor, delineate emotions and imbue Rory with personality (his doggie comments are fun). Each fantasy is illustrated with a full-page depiction of the deed in an appropriate style--a sign affixed to a tree for the yard sale and space-age typeface to narrate the trip to the moon. A sure-fire hit; what Oliver would like to do with his big sister should be next. (Picture book. 4-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780763662417
  • Publisher: Candlewick Press
  • Publication date: 4/23/2013
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 1,403,966
  • Age range: 3 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Sheena Dempsey was born in Cork, Ireland, and studied fine art at the Ireland’s National College of Art and Design. She graduated from London’s Kingston University with a BA in illustration in 2011. Bye-Bye Baby Brother! is her first picture book. She lives in London.
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