DADDY, PAPA, AND ME

As the title indicates, a smiling tot describes his role within a nurturing two-dad family. In rhyming text, “Daddy helps me paint the sky. / Papa helps me bake a pie,” and so on till bedtime. Thompson provides warm, mixed-media illustrations of the happy trio against clean white backgrounds as they play and keep house together. Together with the corresponding Mommy, Mama, and Me (ISBN: 978-1-58246-263-9), it gives children with single-sex parents validation of their family structures in a healthy, positive way. Although it’s not mentioned in the text, the illustrations in each one gently point to mixed-race households as well. Toddlers with two moms or two dads don’t care about gender politics, they care about love, and this is what these two books give them. (12-36 mos.)

Pub Date: May 5, 2009

ISBN: 978-1-58246-262-2

Page Count: 20

Publisher: Tricycle

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2009

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KEVIN AND HIS DAD

There is something profoundly elemental going on in Smalls’s book: the capturing of a moment of unmediated joy. It’s not melodramatic, but just a Saturday in which an African-American father and son immerse themselves in each other’s company when the woman of the house is away. Putting first things first, they tidy up the house, with an unheralded sense of purpose motivating their actions: “Then we clean, clean, clean the windows,/wipe, wipe, wash them right./My dad shines in the windows’ light.” When their work is done, they head for the park for some batting practice, then to the movies where the boy gets to choose between films. After a snack, they work their way homeward, racing each other, doing a dance step or two, then “Dad takes my hand and slows down./I understand, and we slow down./It’s a long, long walk./We have a quiet talk and smile.” Smalls treats the material without pretense, leaving it guileless and thus accessible to readers. Hays’s artwork is wistful and idyllic, just as this day is for one small boy. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: April 1, 1999

ISBN: 0-316-79899-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1999

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100TH DAY WORRIES

1882

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2000

ISBN: 0-689-82979-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 1999

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