My Latest Picture Book
By Patricia J. Murphy
Illustrated by: David Diaz
For Ages: 3 - 6
From the Publisher
In this picture book written by award-winning author, Patricia J. Murphy, and illustrated by Caldecott Medalist, David Diaz, curious baby creatures and their mamas discover the world around them.
When a child notices a grasshopper on a plant while outside with his mother, he exclaims, "Mama, Look!" and sets off a series of curious baby creatures noticing other curious baby creatures and pointing them out to their mothers. The human child spots a grasshopper, the grasshopper spots ants, an ant spots butterflies, a butterfly spots frogs, and so on. Told through a combination of the "Mama, Look!" refrain and identifying noun (i.e. "Mama, Look! Grasshopper."), this simple story is perfect for introducing little ones to the world around them.
FROM MS. SWANSON'S FIRST GRADE CLASS
"I love that you repeat...'Mama, LOOK!'" ~ Max
"I like that the book gives you clues..." ~ Ben
"I liked the bees--especially the eyeballs!" ~ Cassidy
"I like when the rabbits discover the puppy!" ~ Shanya
"I learned that it's good to explore!" ~ Ben
" I like the hints on the each page!" ~ Tiana
"I like the possums!" ~ Mike
"I like everything!" ~ Alex and Leo
FROM KIRKUS REVIEWS
"What’s better than a young child enjoying a nature walk with Mama?
Why, a nature walk that includes baby animals and their mamas also marveling at the wonders around them. Out on a sunny-day jaunt, a toddler joyfully exclaims, “Mama, LOOK!” at the sight of some grasshoppers. This sighting leads to a tiny grasshopper’s excitedly using the same refrain to draw its own mama’s attention to ants. An ant tyke cries out the words upon seeing brilliantly colored butterflies, and so on, with a young, awestruck creature intoning the titular phrase with each page turn as it spots a critter of another species and habitat. All comes full circle at the end when a child’s fingers are seen through an opening in a beehive (rendered as a wasps’ nest—a too-common mistake) as a startled young insect cries out the by-now-familiar words. Realistic depictions of the natural world aren’t the point here—none of the “infant” insects are appropriately rendered in larval form, for instance, in addition to the incorrect beehive. The cheerful, cartoony animals take center stage and are adorable and brilliantly colored; a sly hint of the creature to come on each successive spread is generally incorporated. The humans, depicted with pinkish-tan skin, fare less well, appearing somewhat static and disproportionate.
A cheery springboard for small nature lovers to have their own “Mama, look!” opportunities." (author and illustrator’s note; suggestions for families) (Picture book. 2-4)
FROM SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL
PreS-K "Bold, colorful illustrations dominate this nearly wordless book about a mother and her child walking outdoors and noticing new things in nature. The boy cries, "Mama, LOOK!" as he comes across insects, fish, and other animals. Each "Mama, LOOK!" page offers a clue as to what will be discovered next. Young readers should be encouraged to find the clue and guess what might be coming. The illustrations appear to be mixed media, perhaps including painted and cut paper—the trees are spectacular. Other things, like the animals, are painted in a realistic way. Flowers are stylized and seem to come from a hot, sunny climate and are rendered in a variety of sun-shaped orbs with hot pinks and yellows. This simple book would be fun to read outside with youngsters who are encountering the natural world, and would also be a wonderful inspiration for art projects. VERDICT Recommended for preschooler storytimes and one-on-one sharing." ~ Mary Hazelton, formerly at Warren & Waldoboro Elementary Schools, ME
"A young boy and his mother carry on a simple conversation about the wonders they observe while on a nature walk. “Mama, LOOK!” the boy says, pointing to a grasshopper on a leaf. A page turn supplies Mama’s response, “Grasshoppers,” and an illustration depicting these insects at close range. In subsequent spreads, the pair spies ants, butterflies, frogs, fish, ducks, turtles, bunnies, puppies, squirrels, opossums, birds, bees, and, finally, a younger sibling, previously hidden while riding on Mama’s back. Murphy’s simple call-and-response text will work well for very young listeners, and Caldecott winner Diaz’s bold, vibrantly colored illustrations successfully combine his signature stylized art (prominently visible in the trees and plants) with more realistically rendered animals. In most spreads, Mama’s identifiers appear on the left, while the child’s “Mama, LOOK!” appears on the right, along with a visual hint of the next highlighted animal. A perfect choice for toddler story hours or one-on-one sharing, this is appended with a creators’ note and suggestions for a nature walk in the community." ~ Kay Weisman
Mama, LOOK! and my other books (future ones, too!) can be found or ordered where books are sold. If/when you can, please support your local indie book stores! Thanks!