Ramos reconfigures a well-known joke format into an uplifting, rhythmic exultation of motherhood in this bouncy debut. “Your mama so sweet, she could be a bakery,/ all frosting, powdered sugar, and pastries,” opens Ramos. The first line appears in a banner on a verso page, before smoothly incorporating Spanish on the recto: “Leaves love notes in your almuerzo, homemade./ She’s the cinnamon to your tembleque,/ the tres leches to your cake.” Vivacious spreads by Alcantára depict a majority cast of color, centering a dynamic mother and child with light brown skin and long dark waves who attend school parent night hand-in-hand (“Your mama dress so fine”), take stacks of books to the library checkout (“Your mama a brainiac”), and “with posters homemade,” attend rallies for justice (“Your mama so woke”). Parents and children alike will appreciate this thoroughly contemporary portrait of familial love. Ages 4–7. (Apr.)
"Ramos reconfigures a well-known joke format into an uplifting, rhythmic exultation of motherhood in this bouncy debut....Parents and children alike will appreciate this thoroughly contemporary portrait of familial love." — Publishers Weekly
"A dynamic picture book affirmation of love, adoration and acknowledgement for mothers as both caretakers and individuals....Alcántara's vibrant, tattoo-inspired illustrations boldly complement Ramos's text. The collaboration is an energetic display of admiration for the hard work, love and dedication of mothers." — Shelf Awareness
"A dynamic picture book affirmation of love, adoration and acknowledgement for mothers as both caretakers and individuals....Alcántara's vibrant, tattoo-inspired illustrations boldly complement Ramos's text. The collaboration is an energetic display of admiration for the hard work, love and dedication of mothers."
PreS-Gr 2—In a glowing tribute to mothers, here is one hip parent who spends quality time with her child. Illustrated banners throughout the tale begin with the words "Your Mama" and continue with a description which is pictured on the pages, such as, "Your Mama So Sweet," "Your Mama So Strong," and "Your Mama So Funny." The rhythmic text is lively while vibrant, detailed illustrations reveal the many activities mother and daughter share, such as baking, road trips, birthday parties, and singing along with the car radio. "She got friends at work, at church, around the 'hood. Life is good." English text with a smattering of Spanish words fit with the illustrations of a brown-skinned Latinx mother and young daughter. This mama brings verve to everything she does, whether sewing costumes for her child, attending Parents' Night at school dressed in a flowing orange dress, or taking her girl to the library. With long, wavy black hair; large gold hoop earrings; and heeled knee-high boots decorated with red roses; this mama has as much energy as her child. VERDICT An essential purchase, this contemporary, high-spirited salute to motherhood is a warm and welcoming valentine to family and love.—Maryann H. Owen, Oak Creek P.L., WI
A lyrical, spirited picture book that takes the old “yo’ mama” joke and cracks, snaps, and pops it into an ode to motherhood.
Using a vibrant tattoo motif, colorful, joy-infused artwork, and playful, melodic words, Ramos and Alcántara’s winning picture book celebrates motherhood at its most inspirational. A child and a mother—both with brown skin, long, wavy black hair, and long, bold limbs—spend their days baking and playing, picnicking and protesting, going to the library and taking road trips. It starts with a honeyed bang: “Your Mama So Sweet, She Could Be a Bakery,” spelled out on a ribbon that could adorn a sailor’s arm as narration in regular type expands on this. Each subsequent double-page spread echoes these words (“Your Mama…”), highlighting how this mom’s “so strong,” “so forgiving,” and “so woke.” Notably, readers see a mom that stands alone, strong and defiant, as she walks into her child’s Parent Night at school and strolls through a neighborhood full of friends and passersby. Ramos conjures jubilant scene after scene with deft language and sprinkles of Spanish, and this tale’s more sublime moments (“Your Mama a Brainiac—mo’ betta than any app”) simply shine. Similarly, Alcántara’s art represents motherhood as a model of ideals and mind spun for modern times, both indebted to and limited by the specific type of mother of color depicted here. Overall, it’s a celebration that’s invaluable and needed. (This book was reviewed digitally with 10-by-20-inch double-page spreads viewed at 74% of actual size.)
Perfectly dazzling. (Picture book. 4-10)