Most helpful critical review
38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
Too wordy and factual for it's target age group
on December 2, 2009
This book is described as a reading level for ages 4-8 . . . and I think that's a bit of a stretch. Yes, I've known some 'advanced' four year olds that might have understood this book, but the amount of the text alone is daunting. I got this for my cousin and her husband, who have a 4 year old (Braden), and are pregnant with their second, and there is no way Braden would have sat through this book. I didn't even read all the writing, I started skimming . . . it's overwhelming. And I read, a lot, and I also enjoy childrens books, but this one . . . I just couldn't get into it.
I wanted a book to help introduce him to the idea of another baby, and this is a little TOO factual. Yes, the information provided is very good, and as an adopted child I'm pleased to see adoption mentioned (however briefly) but to be honest, what 4 year old needs to know that the baby's eyes may change color and you won't know what they'll be till their first birthday, or need to see pictures of the baby in the uterus (what 4 year old even needs to know what a uterus is?). I did like that they said the baby came out of the mom, I don't like books insinuating a stork or something else brought a baby, it comes out of a person and there's no reason for that to be taboo, but I thought the line about C sections was a bit much. "They're pushed out - through an opening between moms' legs, or lifted out - through a cut made in moms tummies by their doctors. (Those moms have surgery and get a special medicine so it won't hurt.)" Even though they add that it wont hurt . . . it's a 4 year old. Telling them someone might be cutting open their moms tummy . . . Braden almost started crying when I jokingly said he was so cute I wanted to eat him (some kids think that is really funny, he, did not). I showed this book to my mom and she immediately agreed, she thought it was way too wordy, and too factual, for a 4 year old. Or even a 5 or 6 year old.
If you have a child that is very inquisitive, and likes to know everything about something, and has a really good attention span, especially for books, then yes, get this. It's great, in that sense. But as a book helping a small child learn about being an older sibling? No. This is more a book about pregnancy and just a baby, in general. What do babies look like, what do they eat, what do they like to do, etc. Those are good categories if you have one or two small answers, not entire paragraphs.
Anyways, I feel bad being the first non 5 star review on this book, but I feel like people need to know. The other book we got was "I'm a Big Brother" by Joanna Cole and Maxie Chambliss and it was much smaller, shorter, and we liked it a lot more (http://www.amazon.com/Im-Big-Brother-Joanna-Cole/dp/0688145078/ref=pd_cp_b_1). I'm also going to get "The New Baby" by Mercer Mayer (http://www.amazon.com/New-Baby-Mercer-Mayer/dp/0307119424/ref=pd_sim_b_4) because I grew up with that (probably got it right before my parents adopted my younger brother) and I remember it well and both my brother and I enjoyed reading it. There's nothing wrong with a factual book, but know your audience. I don't know many 4 year olds that will have an interest in learning about a womb.