In warm, cozily textured spreads, an attentive father serves as a virtual playground for his pajama-clad son and daughter. Forming an arch on the carpet floor, he’s “the longest tunnel I’ve ever crawled through” and when he swings them by their hands, it’s “as merry as a merry-go-round.” Swooshes of motion, like a jet’s contrail, emphasize action and movement, and the pastel palette exudes a homey quality that works in both the most active scenes and in the eventual wind-down to bedtime. Up to age 3. (May)
Whether through horseplay or a kiss, this hip dad physically expresses his affection. He flings open his children's bedroom door, and the pajama-clad youngsters race to him with open arms. Daddy, dressed in jeans and a tie, throws his whole body into the play; he swings his children by the hands and uses his stomach as monkey bars. It's no wonder this son and daughter repeatedly express heartfelt adoration. "My dad is the best, / my favorite playground." High-energy antics draw to a calming close; little arms drape over Daddy's back as he carries them to bed. Refreshingly, this dad is the sole caregiver in each scene, modulating from exuberance to somnolence with expertise. "He's as comforting as a snuggle / or a story that we've read." He's also apparently relaxed in his child-rearing; a scribbled drawing on the wall (and lone crayon on the floor) receives no comment. Hazy, creamy backgrounds keep the emphasis on the personal interactions instead of the impersonal decor. This late-night roughhousing romp speaks volumes about a father's love. (Board book. 1-3)
LUCIANA NAVARRO POWELL is an illustrator, designer, mother of two very young children, and wife of a playful guy who lives to come home to his kids, play with them and get them off to bed! She has illustrated several books for children and lives in San Diego, California.