Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
"Tell me some more about waiting, Mama. Tell me again," comes the recurring plea from the young protagonist of Alexander's (Nadia the Willful) labored story. A mother recounts, at her daughter's urgings, the months of waiting for her baby's birth, focusing on the changes in the seasons (e.g., "I was waiting when the new-hatched goslings and ducklings waddled down the path and around the pond and the wild violets began to bloom on the rise beyond"). Readers may have less patience than this child who eagerly listens to Mama's soporific descriptions of weather and animal activity from winter through autumn, when her infant is finally born. Soman's (When I Am Old with You) softly focused, sometimes hazy watercolors faithfully document the seasonal changes and capture the affection between mother and child, but youngsters are more likely to crave details about the impending newborn than the environmental sounds and sights the expectant mother witnesses. Ages 3-5. (Sept.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal - Library Journal
K-Gr 2-Although a little girl has heard the story many times of how her mother eagerly anticipated her birth, she begs to hear it again and again. Both words and pictures reveal the close relationship between the two, and the anticipation of the child's birth is tied completely to that of the life cycle in nature. The expectant mother's waiting parallels both the changing of the seasons from winter through late fall and the natural phenomena that accompany them. The author's tone is soothing and her words are well chosen, even poetic at times, when describing such wonders as the "frozen dewdrop lace" on the wintry raspberry bushes or the first wild violets of spring beginning to "bloom on the rise beyond." The realistic watercolor paintings are a perfect complement to both the simple, yet evocative language and the mood of the story. Their rich colors and carefully drawn details contribute to the clarity of the text. Similar in theme but geared to an older audience than Barbara Joosse's Mama, Do You Love Me? (Chronicle, 1991), this is a warm, reassuring tale for adults and children to snuggle up with and share.-Nancy Menaldi-Scanlan, LaSalle Academy, Providence, RI Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
"Look, Mama! The fireflies are dancing over the pond! I see them, my love. Tell me again, Mama, about waiting to watch them with me. Tell me again, one more time. All right, my love."
So goes the refrain throughout Sue Alexander's book One More Time, Mama. In this beautifully written picture book, an appreciation for life and love radiates throughout as text and illustrations blend as one.
A young daughter questions her mother about the precious time before her birth, the time of waiting. Mother answers her daughter by describing the changing seasons as they passed. After each season's activities are recounted, she is gently nudged on by the child's recurring refrain.
Alexander's lyrical prose moves across the pages as gracefully as the seasons cycle through our lives. She examines the intricate details of nature and its delicate balance of wildlife through this loving dialogue between mother and child, a dialogue so familiar and so grounded in the time of waiting.
The illustrator, David Soman, brings this story to life with full-page watercolors. His artwork builds upon nature's vivid palette and subtly changes with the seasons as each page is turned. Most memorable of all are the warm reds and golds that characterize the mother-daughter relationship. Soman is best known for his illustrations of Angela Johnson's picture books. His latest work is Only One Cowry: A Dahomean Tale, a picture book written by Phillis Gershator.
Sue Alexander's One More Time, Mama is the perfect selection for a bedtime read. Her expert prose leaves plenty of room for expressions of love and shared memories. The tone is much like that of her book Sara's City (1995), published by Clarion Books. Alexander's latest picture book is Behold The Trees, illustrated by Leonid Gore and published by Arthur A. Levine. She is the author of many books for children of all ages.