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Pecan Pie Baby

Pecan Pie Baby

by Jacqueline Woodson

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A sweet addition to the family is coming! Written by National Book Award-winning author Jacqueline Woodson. Illustrated by Caldecott Award-winning illustrator Sophie Blackall.

All anyone wants to talk about with Mama is the new “ding-dang baby” that’s on the way, and Gia is getting sick of it! If her new sibling is


A sweet addition to the family is coming! Written by National Book Award-winning author Jacqueline Woodson. Illustrated by Caldecott Award-winning illustrator Sophie Blackall.

All anyone wants to talk about with Mama is the new “ding-dang baby” that’s on the way, and Gia is getting sick of it! If her new sibling is already such a big deal, what’s going to happen to Gia’s nice, cozy life with Mama once the baby is born?
“[An] honest story about jealousy, anger, displacement, and love [that] will touch kids dealing with sibling rivalry and spark their talk about change.”—Booklist
“Fresh and wise.”—Kirkus Reviews

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Mama is pregnant with what soon-to-be sibling Gia refers to as "the ding-dang baby." Among the indignities she suffers: the in utero baby is already copying Gia's love of pecan pie--a culinary obsession that Gia thought she could share with Mama alone. "So that baby's just being a copycat!" gripes Gia. Newbery Honor author Woodson (Show Way) doesn't have new insights into displacement fears: the usual anxieties, oblivious relatives, and reassurances populate her story. But what she does have to say still resonates: "I know what I'm going to miss the most," Gia complains after an outburst at Thanksgiving dinner. "My whole, whole life." Blackall's (Big Red Lollipop) stylized ink and watercolor images, with their muted colors and slightly flattened perspectives, have a strong sense of style and calming warmth, as in a scene where Gia sits on the stoop, special memories of her mother spooling outward in squiggly thought bubbles. Gia may have moments when she feels "real, real, real alone," but readers will sense that Mama's love endures--and that Gia is going to be a very cool older sister. Ages 5–8. (Oct.)
Children's Literature - Ellen Welty
Gia is tired of that ding-dang baby, her new brother or sister who hasn't even been born yet! All her friends are excited about it, all her relatives are excited about it and even her teacher reads a book out loud about being a big sister and then everyone looks at Gia. Gia wishes things could go back to the way they have always been, just her and her mom. Her mom says the new baby will be here before snow falls and Gia hopes there won't be any snow. Gia's feelings get the best of her at the table at Thanksgiving and she is sent to her room for her outburst. When her mom comes up later they talk about what they're going to miss the most after the baby comes and Gia is reassured that her mom will miss the times the two of them had together too. This is a comforting story for a child who might be resenting all the attention new babies get. It would be a good story to introduce a conversation about families and sharing with a child who may be expecting a sibling soon. Reviewer: Ellen Welty
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2—Gia's mother is pregnant, and the child is not happy about it. As the story progresses, so does Gia's resentment until it all comes to a head at the Thanksgiving dinner table when she says quietly at first, and then practically yells, "'I'm so sick of that ding-dang baby!'" She is sent to her room where she has time to think. Mama later shares her feelings of how she, too, is going to miss some of the things that will change when the baby comes. "'Those were the good old days.' says Gia. Mama says, "'Guess you're going to have to tell the baby all about it,' and Gia agrees, 'I guess I am.'" From then on, the girl is reassured and her attitude changes for the better. The one thing that Gia, her mother, and the new baby already share is a love of pecan pie. This sweet universal story will have broad appeal. Blackall's full-spread illustrations done in ink and watercolor gently convey the sense of passing time, along with Gia's frustration and nostalgia regarding how things used to be and how they will change. A fine addition to the new-sibling canon.—Mary N. Oluonye, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH
Kirkus Reviews
A feisty big-sister-to-be narrates her ambivalence about her mama's impending childbirth. The baby fixations of classmates, aunties and Grandma reinforce Gia's sense that she's got everything to lose when this winter baby comes—Mama's gentle remonstrances notwithstanding. Woodson infuses Gia's primal child-voice with an authorial lyricism that permits some lovely, lucid introspection. During a "baby-this and baby-that" Thanksgiving dinner, an outburst ("I'm so sick of that DING-DANG BABY!") gets Gia banished to her room. "Upstairs, I got that teary, choky feeling. And even though there were a whole lot of people in my house, I felt real, real, / real alone." Blackall's apt watercolor-and-ink pictures capture the grounded serenity of a multiracial family (and community) with its priorities on straight. Beloved Gia's got corn rows and a sweet gap between her front teeth. The fact that a dad or other mom doesn't figure in renders her conflict more poignant. Cleverly, the story arc spans autumn's slide into winter—a welcome alternative to all those ding-dang spring-baby plots. Fresh and wise. (Picture book. 3-7)

Product Details

Penguin Young Readers Group
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Penguin Group
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File size:
29 MB
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Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Jacqueline Woodson (www.jacquelinewoodson.com) is the 2014 National Book Award Winner for her New York Times bestselling memoir BROWN GIRL DREAMING, which was also a recipient of the Coretta Scott King Award, a Newbery Honor Award, the NAACP Image Award and the Sibert Honor Award. Woodson was recently named the Young People’s Poet Laureate by the Poetry Foundation. Born on February 12th in Columbus, Ohio, Jacqueline Woodson grew up in Greenville, South Carolina, and Brooklyn, New York and graduated from college with a B.A. in English. She is the author of more than two dozen award-winning books for young adults, middle graders and children; among her many accolades, she is a four-time Newbery Honor winner, a three-time National Book Award finalist, and a two-time Coretta Scott King Award winner. Her books  include THE OTHER SIDE, EACH KINDNESS, Caldecott Honor Book COMING ON HOME SOON; Newbery Honor winners FEATHERS, SHOW WAY, and AFTER TUPAC AND D FOSTER, and MIRACLE'S BOYS—which received the LA Times Book Prize and the Coretta Scott King Award and was adapted into a miniseries directed by Spike Lee. Jacqueline is also the recipient of the Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement for her contributions to young adult literature, the winner of the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award, and was the 2013 United States nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Award. She lives with her family in Brooklyn, New York.

From the Hardcover edition.

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