Baby Goes to Market

illus. by Angela Brooksbank. 32p. Candlewick. Sept. 2017. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780763695705.
Toddler-PreS—A joyful black baby and his mother go shopping in an open air market in West Africa, where unbeknownst to Mama, baby is busy collecting his own wares from a variety of vendors. The rhythmic text is perfectly suited for reading aloud, and young listeners will quickly pick up on the inside joke between author and listeners as the illustrations feature the mischievious baby on Mama's back, adding his own items to the wide brimmed basket balanced atop her head. "Market is very crowded. Baby is very curious. Baby is so curious that Mrs. Ade, the banana seller, gives Baby six bananas. Baby is so surprised. Baby eats one banana…and puts five bananas in the basket." The pattern of Mama shopping for her own goods and adding them to the basket, and Baby being given treats to snack on and store in Mama's basket, turns the story into a clever count along. Brooksbank's debut as illustrator is strong. The vibrant marketplace is filled with color, texture, and patterns created using a mixed-media palette. The opening and ending endpapers feature the same pattern that is on the wrap Mama uses to hold Baby on her back.
VERDICT Young listeners will delight in getting to know Baby and his Mama as they shop throughout the market. Consider for first purchase in larger collections.

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