Za-Za's Baby Brother

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Za-Za's mom has a baby and Za-Za's parents are too busy to pay any attention to her. At last, when it's time for the baby to go to sleep, Mom and Dad give Za-Za just what she needs--a big hug. With her childlike sensibility and bold art, Cousins reassures young children that while life changes when a new baby arrives, Mom and Dad's love will always stay the same. Full color.

Za-Za the zebra must adjust to the arrival of a baby ...

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Overview

Za-Za's mom has a baby and Za-Za's parents are too busy to pay any attention to her. At last, when it's time for the baby to go to sleep, Mom and Dad give Za-Za just what she needs--a big hug. With her childlike sensibility and bold art, Cousins reassures young children that while life changes when a new baby arrives, Mom and Dad's love will always stay the same. Full color.

Za-Za the zebra must adjust to the arrival of a baby brother.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
A bevy of favorite picture books are now available in a board book edition. Maisy creator Lucy Cousins's childlike figures in thick black outline set against bold fields of color distinguish Za-Za's Baby Brother. A new baby in the family means that Mom and Dad have less time for young Za-Za the zebra in a simple story that delivers a useful message to preschoolers. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Cousins's Maisy Goes to School childlike gouache figures and hand-lettered text set against bold fields of color give this oversized book a decidedly cheerful look. Za-Za, a young zebra, candidly narrates the story: "My mom is going to have a baby. She has a big fat tummy. There's not much room for a hug." A familiar scenario unfolds after Mom brings the newborn home from the hospital. Visitors arrive to coo at the baby, and Mom and Dad shower the interloper with attention, too. When Za-Za demands a hug "now!" Mom responds: "Why don't you hug the baby?" So the older sibling does just that-and, after spending some time playing with the little one, concludes, "He was nice. It was fun." Finally, Mom puts the baby to sleep, and Za-Za gets a hug and a story. If not the most clever or insightful book available on this well-worn subject, Cousins's simple story delivers a useful message to preschoolers in Za-Za's situation. Ages 2-up. Aug.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1-Cousins uses her bold cartoon artwork this time to feature an appealing zebra and her growing family. Unfortunately, the simple story reinforces too many of the stereotypes associated with new siblings and offers little comfort to youngsters confronted with a new household member. For instance, when the relatives come to visit, they completely ignore Za-Za, who is shown playing alone in the corner. Mom and Dad are both too preoccupied to deal with their daughter. In fact, when Za-Za announces, ``Mom! I want my hug now!,'' her mother replies, ``Why don't you hug the baby?'' Obviously, Za-Za needs to quell her feelings of displacement, a fact her mother just does not seem to grasp. The child is finally rewarded with her parents' attention only after she hugs and plays with the baby. The message here is certainly not a reassuring one.-Lisa Marie Gangemi, Farmingdale Public Library, NY
Hazel Rochman
Za-Za, a little zebra, talks about her problems with her mother's new baby. The whole sibling displacement scenario is dramatized with big, simple gouache illustrations and thick black type. Mom's fat pregnant tummy doesn't leave much room on her lap for Za-Za. When the baby comes home from the hospital, everyone is too tired to give Za-Za much attention. Visitors come to coo over the new arrival, and Za-Za plays by herself. Then she begins to play with the baby. Finally, she gets the hugs and attention she craves from her parents. The large-size, brightly colored book will appeal to the small child, who will find reassurance in the realistic treatment of family jealousy and affection.
Children's Literature - Marilyn Meyerson
Za-Za becomes a big sister and there are lots of changes in the family's life—all told from her point of view! Before the birth, Mom's tummy is so big; there is no lap left for Za-Za to snuggle and receive a hug. After the baby is born, Mom is tired, Dad is busy and all the friends and relatives coo over the new addition. As the older sibling, Za-Za is asked to wait to hear a story, to have a snack, even to get a hug. Cousins tells this family tale using her signature bold graphics and bright gouache colors. Toddlers will identify with daily scenes of the zebra family doing laundry, washing dishes, diapering the baby. They may also identify with Za-Za's feelings of displacement and jealousy. The illustrations are large and easily viewable for story time, but this is a book meant for lap sharing by parent and child. Za-Za never says she feels left out, but we can "read" her expressions and see her positioning on the edges of scenes. Parents can share this book with toddlers to help them explore their feelings about new siblings. It is ultimately comforting and reassuring, even if we might quibble with a parent being too busy to hug a toddler. Reviewer: Marilyn Meyerson
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780613091442
  • Publisher: San Val, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/28/1997
  • Product dimensions: 9.70 (w) x 11.84 (h) x 0.38 (d)

Meet the Author

Lucy Cousins

Lucy Cousins is the creator of the beloved Maisy series. She is also the author-illustrator of the widely acclaimed Yummy: Eight Favorite Fairy Tales, a New York Times Book Review Best Illustrated Children’s Book, as well as I’m the Best and Hooray for Fish! Lucy Cousins lives in Hampshire, England.

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