From the Day You Were Born by Sophie Piper and Kristina Stephenson
|From the Day You Were Born by Sophie Piper and Kristina Stephenson|
|Category: For Sharing|
|Reviewer: Ruth Ng|
|Summary: A really sweet little story, perfect for sharing with your baby.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 12||Date: April 2011|
|Publisher: Lion Hudson|
|External links: Author's website|
This lovely little story looks at parental love, of that special bond that grows between parents and children, how babies grow and develop as they get older, and how that love is for ever and for always.
I found From The Day You Were Born very moving. My four year old and I whizzed through it, since really it's aimed at babies and younger toddlers. Whilst she leaped up to go and get the next book to read, I sat quietly by myself for a moment actually wiping a tear away. I know, I know, crying over a picture book! It has happened before in this house I have to say (Lost and Found by Oliver Jeffers gets me every single time!) but there was something moving about this book.
I like how it develops, looking at what babies can do when they're tiny, all the little noises they make and the confusions over what it is a baby actually wants. The writer cleverly suggests that this is a game on baby's part and the picture to go with it shows two exhausted, pyjama-wearing parents holding out a variety of offerings to a crying baby: a teddy, a bottle, a finger to bite on! I laughed at that, the memories of searching desperately for the 'fix' to resolve a crying baby being only too fresh in my mind!
There's a sweet picture, too, of a baby zonked out asleep on someone's lap whilst the text reads that the baby is teaching everyone to be kind and gentle, and that when the baby falls asleep on someone they will sit still for ages so as not to wake them. We then see a series of pictures showing a small child growing up, learning to talk and walk, talking about all the fun things they'll be able to do for themselves as they grow and interesting ideas of what they might want to be when they grow up. The options listed are nice and varied, from a builder to a painter, a doctor, an explorer, a park keeper and a dancer!
The end of the book is where I found myself getting emotional, for alongside of two more sweet pictures are the words For ever and for always, you are a very special person. You then turn the page to my favourite illustration of all in the book which shows a mother and child (could be a boy or a girl) viewed from behind standing in a grassy field, scatterings of poppies around them, both a little wind-blown, watching the sunset together and the words read For ever and for always, I will love you: as I have always loved you from the day you were born. I know that it's soppy and twee, but it's also really rather lovely!
I would've jumped to give this an immediate 5 stars as I really enjoyed this book and wished I'd had it a few years ago to share with my daughter from when she was tiny, but actually I've decided to take off half a star because, although it's a lovely story, I did worry that it excludes any children who have been adopted into a family since it is specifically talking about the day the child was born and knowing, from that moment, that you loved them. I know this is a bit picky, but within our circle of friends there are adopted children and it just made me stop and think for a moment that for some families it might be a rather different reading experience.
It would make a lovely gift, though, for anyone who has given birth recently, and it's a delightful story to begin reading with a baby and continue reading together as the baby grows up, reinforcing that message of how dear your child is to you, and how you will always love them. Definitely recommended.
Thanks to the publisher for sending it to Bookbag.
To make you laugh after all that crying, then head straight for Chick by Ed Vere, and if you're trying to reassure your precious darling that you'll still love them even after the arrival of a new sibling then you might find this book helpful: The Baby (But I'd Have Liked a Hamster) by India Knight and Jessica Meserve.
You can read more book reviews or buy From the Day You Were Born by Sophie Piper and Kristina Stephenson at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy From the Day You Were Born by Sophie Piper and Kristina Stephenson at Amazon.com.
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