Welcome to the World

S. & S./Paula Wiseman. Jan. 2023. 32p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781665929875.
Baby-Toddler–This joyful celebration of the baby and toddler years feels like a modern classic. Donaldson’s rhyming couplets welcome babies to the small moments and sensory experiences that will define their world, while Oxenbury’s gentle illustrations add moments of poignancy and humor. A diverse group of little ones is portrayed, with loving adults representing mothers and fathers, grandparents, and teachers. Each vignette narrows in on the elements babies are likely to notice. A baby nursing, pictured grabbing the mother’s necklace, is told, “Welcome to your mommy. Welcome to your feeds. Welcome to the earrings and the buttons and the beads.” This focus on the child’s perspective is the inspired conceit and beating heart of the book. It honors the lived experiences of children while simultaneously adding a meditative element, cherishing the small and transitory moments of life. Joy pulses through the entire work, while elements in the illustrations recognize the exhausting work of parenthood with good humor: a dad up at night with his baby is rumpled; a mom juggles everything, including her baby in the rain; another dad calmly grabs a wine-shaped bottle off a grocery shelf while his toddler is nearly vaulting out of the shopping cart. A spread portraying toddlers and a teacher at a preschool or daycare with the text, “Welcome to the girls. Welcome to the boys,” may put off families breaking away from the gender binary.
VERDICT Likely to become an instant classic and a favorite for families to snuggle up and read together, this charming picture book is recommended for first purchase.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing