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The Wild, Wild Inside: A View from Mommy's Tummy!

Overview

What does the baby do all day? Mom always says the baby is eating or sleeping or kicking. But that’s not all! From flying to the moon, to sliding into home base, to leaping across a stage, Mom sure would be surprised if she really knew what was going on….This humorous and imaginative “inside look” at a baby’s life before birth from popular bestselling author Kate Feiffer is sure to answer siblings’ every question when they wonder what their new baby brother or sister is really ...

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Overview

What does the baby do all day? Mom always says the baby is eating or sleeping or kicking. But that’s not all! From flying to the moon, to sliding into home base, to leaping across a stage, Mom sure would be surprised if she really knew what was going on….This humorous and imaginative “inside look” at a baby’s life before birth from popular bestselling author Kate Feiffer is sure to answer siblings’ every question when they wonder what their new baby brother or sister is really doing in Mom’s tummy.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Feiffer and Huliska-Beith's pregnancy comedy gets off to a slow start: the opening pages, devoted to all the baby's possible names, doesn't have much to do with what follows. But once they establish their hook, the book cruises along. Mom, whose tummy has reached are-we-there-yet proportions, has three standard answers to the story's interrogative refrain (“What's the baby doing?”): baby is eating, sleeping, or kicking. But the in utero protagonist provides the real answers—or at least answers that show the beginnings of a first-class imagination. Mom says that the baby is sleeping while she takes a shower, but the narrator, who has somehow obtained a bright yellow slicker, begs to differ. “I was on a boat in the ocean in a big storm. A big, HUGE, GIGANTIC rainstorm.” Though Huliska-Beith's (The Worst Best Friend) artwork retains the comic surrealism of previous books, some may feel she's gone too cutesy—Baby's kewpieness could be dialed back. Still, the acrylic images' sculptural feel and neon colors are a good match for Feiffer's (Which Puppy?) exuberance and may offer a welcome distraction from burgeoning displacement anxieties. Ages 4–8. (Mar.)
School Library Journal
PreS-K—Yet another title to add to the glut of new baby books, this time from the point of view of the baby inside. The infant introduces herself, explains that the parents don't know her name because they don't know if she is a girl or boy, and then proceeds to list all of the things that is she doing when her mom says she is eating, sleeping, or kicking. Her activities include everything from flying in a rocket ship to doing yoga to dancing. Finally, in a switch from past to present tense she is "very very busy" being born. And on the final page, with no transition: "Hello Molly." Frenetic acrylic illustrations feature round-headed, pointy-nosed people who all look constantly delighted. The artwork is large and bright, mixing single full pages and spreads with spot art, which effectively encourages page turns and narrative flow. Both the father and the very pregnant mother are depicted as active, involved parents, and the busy pictures contain a lot of movement. Unfortunately, the story doesn't really work. The awkward tense change, the flips between total fantasy and semi-reality, and the uninspired text simply don't add up. Barbara Park's Ma! There's Nothing to Do Here! (Random, 2008) treads similar ground with a better-flowing text.—Amy Lilien-Harper, The Ferguson Library, Stamford, CT
Kirkus Reviews
A tale that means to impress with its ingenuity ends up instead presenting a confusing take on what goes on in utero. The notion that babies spend their time eating, sleeping and kicking in the womb is upended by a plucky unborn infant who is quick to correct these assumptions. When this baby isn't leaping across a stage, it's driving a spaceship or winning a baseball game. Mommy's explanations about the baby's life are all wrong. The one time Mom is right? Only at the end when she says the baby is ready to be born (but here she's wrong too, as she says the baby is kicking "A LOT" when instead what she's feeling are contractions, of course). It's certainly creative, but eschewing the usual new-baby practicalities makes this book just too fanciful and muddling for anxious about-to-be siblings. Certainly Huliska-Beith's thick paints catch the eye as she cleverly mimics Mommy's activities with the baby's imagined adventures, but even so, this effort is likely to provoke a slew of baffled questions with its skewed view into a fetus's world. (Picture book. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781416940999
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
  • Publication date: 3/23/2010
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 1,009,505
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD500L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.98 (w) x 11.28 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Kate Feiffer is a writer, a filmmaker, and a mother. She is the author of the picture books No Go Sleep!; President Pennybaker; But I Wanted a Baby Brother!; The Wild, Wild Inside; Which Puppy?; My Mom Is Trying to Ruin My Life; and Double Pink; and of the middle-grade novels Signed by Zelda and The Problem with the Puddles. She lives with her family on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. Visit her at KateFeiffer.com.

Laura Huliska Beith is a freelance illustrator living in Kansas City with her husband, Jeff, and three dogs Roxy, Chloe, and Jake. Several books she illustrated have been included in the Society of Illustrators Original Art show, including "Bad Ideas" which also received a Marion Vannet Ridgeway honor for its debut in Children's Publishing. Some of her most recent projects, The Worst Best Friend and The Recess Queen both written by Alexis O'Neill (Scholastic). Shown Below, The Goodnight Train by June Sobel (Harcourt).

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