Reminds firstborn children that they will always special--even if another child or children follow--because they have been the first to do many things, including teaching their mother and father to be parents.
Booklist Reviews : Booklist Reviews 2013 September #2 *Starred Review* Usually books about sibling jealousy over a new baby focus on the interloper. This sweet story reminds firstborns they will always have pride of place. The coverâan Asian mom and a Caucasian dad smile at their baby and dog lying together on a quiltâis representative of many adorable pictures to come. The text is directed to the child and tells of his many firsts: You were the first to cry. / You were the first to smile. As the story moves forward, the child becomes a little older in each spread. The tiny baby is soon crawling and blowing kisses at the dog. Later he crawls, toddles at the beach, catches leaves, and makes snow angels. When spring comes, he is the first to dig in the garden. He is also the first to teach us how to be parents. And though one day there may be a second or third child, he is reassured that You will always be the first. In some ways, of course, this is really for parents looking for a reassuring way to talk about family additions. But preschoolers will enjoy this look back, and the story should spark discussion and memories of what it was like when they were young(er). Copyright 2013 Booklist Reviews.
Publishers Weekly Reviews : PW Reviews 2013 July #1
Let's hear it for the privileges of birth order! Because as this book reminds all the Numero Unos out there, "One day there may be a secondâor a thirdâto sleep in the basket with the yellow ribbon wound round. But you will always be the first." MacLachlan (Cat Talk) and Graegin (Water in the Park) celebrate the modest milestones that seem so marvelous the first time around: first snowfall, first steps, first smiles, and first coos. As MacLachlan sagely observes, first babies "teach us how to be parents," a statement that many children may find positively revelatory. However, the book presents parenthood as a surprisingly passive learning experience. Graegin's mixed-media images, rendered in soft nursery colors, portray a couple in a kind of holding pattern of happiness. There are no highs, lows, or frantic moments of wondering what to do; every page is a study in warm, easy smiles. Even singletons who think they're very special indeed may see this as an overidealized depiction of the nuclear family. Up to age 3. Author's agent: Rubin Pfeffer, East West Literary Agency. Illustrator's agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (Sept.)
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School Library Journal Reviews : SLJ Reviews 2013 September
K-Gr 1âTold in second person, this picture book pays tribute to the significance of the moments with a baby from its very first night home. "You were the firstâ¦. You were the first to sleep in the basket with the yellow ribbon wound round. You were the first to cry. You were the first to smile." Simple, poignant lines allow plenty of room for the warm illustrations done in graphite pencil and ink to bring readers into the joyful home of this young family. Each page is full of telling details for children to notice while conveying emotion that will resonate strongly with parents. The baby grows a little with every page turn in this book of firsts-lifting his head, and then crawling, walking, and running-bringing readers to the powerful line in the text: "You were the first to teach us how to be parents." The book closes with that yellow-ribboned basket again while suggesting a possible second child, but promising that this baby will always be the first. A touching celebration for firstborns.âJulie Roach, Cambridge Public Library, MA
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