There's Going to Be a Babyby John Burningham, Helen Oxenbury (Illustrator)
When is the new baby coming? What will we call it? What will he do? We don’t really need a baby, do we? With sensitivity and wit, John Burningham follows the swirl of questions in the mind of a young child/b>
In a first-time creative pairing, two of the world’s most treasured picture book creators offer a truly delightful book for new-siblings-to-be.
When is the new baby coming? What will we call it? What will he do? We don’t really need a baby, do we? With sensitivity and wit, John Burningham follows the swirl of questions in the mind of a young child anticipating a baby sibling with excitement, curiosity, and just a bit of trepidation. In perfect tandem, Helen Oxenbury captures the child’s loving interactions with his mother — along with the fanciful future scenarios he imagines for the new family member he has yet to meet. Combining a warm, timeless story with illustrations both freshly enchanting and wonderfully nostalgic, this gorgeous book has all the hallmarks of a classic.
Burningham and Oxenbury team for a poignant treatment of a preschooler's ambivalence about a forthcoming new sibling. The dialogue couples Mommy's benign suggestions about the baby's future exploits with her son's far less equivocal, here-and-now replies. She muses, "I wonder if the baby will work here at the zoo one day, looking after the animals." He rejoins (a twinge, one hopes), "Then the baby might get eaten by a tiger." The elegant text type (Polymer) is coolly pale for Mommy's comments, bold-faced for her boy's. The lovely ink drawings are digitally colored in flat, muted hues accented with rich reds. To dignify and celebrate the boy's robust imaginative flights, double-page spreads, each with eight panels reminiscent of old-timey comics, depict the baby painting messily, maneuvering a sailboat or raking leaves in Parks and Rec jammies. The seasons turn, Mommy gets bigger and, finally, Grandad and boy walk down a hospital corridor, gift and flowers in hand. Heavy paper, generous trim, amusing endpapers and, above all, beautifully evoked relationships combine for a winning package. (Picture book. 2-6)
Meet the Author
John Burningham, a two-time winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal, is the author- illustrator of many acclaimed picture books, including the Candlewick titles It’s a Secret and Harvey Slumfenburger’s Christmas Present. His work is also featured in the collectors’ volume John Burningham. He lives in London with his wife, Helen Oxenbury.
Helen Oxenbury, a winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal among many other awards, has illustrated such Candlewick books as Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Alice Through the Looking Glass, Big Momma Makes the World, Farmer Duck, We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, and So Much! She lives in London with her husband, John Burningham.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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The charming illustrations compliment this story about a little boy's attempt to get his mind around the coming of a new baby into his up-to-now prerfect world. It is hysterically funny wathing the little fella imagine what the baby might be able to do and then what disasters will ensue. I loved this book!