Our enthusiasm for Picture Book Thursday seemed to fizzle out a bit last spring. But I think that was mostly because we had shared most of our favorite books from our daughters' vast collections. BUT, I've had some review picture books laying around here for quite a while now and I am hoping to make Picture Book Thursday a regular feature once again! So let's start off with Pouch! by David Ezra Stein. Became available in book stores on September 17th.
This adorable book introduces us to a baby kangaroo who wants to get out of his mother's pouch and hop around to explore the world. He is excited to see what is out and around him, however, when he encounters something new to him (a bee, rabbit, bird, a new kangaroo friend) he gets a bit nervous and runs back to his mother's pouch for comfort. Each time he emerges from the pouch he takes a few more steps away from his mother, but she is always there for him if he needs her for comfort.
Such a fun little book to show children that it is great to take a few steps away from Mom and see the surprises of the world. And Mommy will always be right there for you if you need a little extra comfort as you get used to something new. And in the end, taking those steps away from Mom could mean something great like making a new friend to play with!
For extra fun, look at the illustrations closely and see if your child can spot the animal from the previous pages in the drawings (ie: the bee on the rabbit page).
Pouch! is perfect for those children who may be a little shy and might need a story to show that it is okay to be nervous about encountering new things. I also think this would be great for the toddler to preschool group who are growing too old for board books, but do not have the attention span yet for longer story-driven picture books. A perfect starter picture book!
About the Author/Illustrator:
David Ezra Stein received the Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award for Leaves, which was also a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year, a Kirkus Reviews Editor's Choice and a School Library Journal Best Book. His other books include: The Nice Book, Cowboy Ned and Andy, and Monster Hug! He lives in Kew Gardens, New York.
There is a fun "Making of Pouch" feature on the author's website! Check it out here.
Thank you to Sara Zick from the Penguin Group for sending me a copy of this delightful book to review!