I Love Mum by Joanna Walsh and Judi Abbot

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I Love Mum by Joanna Walsh and Judi Abbot

Category: For Sharing
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Lorraine McDonald
Reviewed by Lorraine McDonald
Summary: Two tiger cubs explain why their Mum is great in an ode to Mums everywhere. A warm salute to every multi tasking, trouble shooting, hard working, Mummy.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: January 2014
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Children's Books
ISBN: 9780857070593

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When I went to get dressed this morning, there, on my only decent post baby bra, was what appeared to be butternut squash. Regurgitated. Veg I.D. was confirmed by the Daddy of the house. Ever helpful, he recalled that he had seen our little boy chewing it. It is because of incidents like this that books like I Love Mum get written, bought and read. Without a bit of positive affirmation for Mummies, the human race could die out. Quickly.

I Love Mum is what it says in the title. It’s a very long list of why Mum is so great. Mum in this instance is a tiger with two little cubs but I think the sentiment is transferable to humans! The choice of animals is probably no coincidence as most Mums have a bit of a tiger spirit where their little ones are concerned. The tiger cubs tell this tale. They start with Mum’s smile. Some smiles are sun smiles run for miles smiles but no one’s smile is wider, brighter than my mum’s smile. Tiger Mum can make things out of nothing. With her, tidying is fun. Naturally, she bakes. And manages to play tennis and football while the oven is on. At the park no one else is quite as good as her at swinging, bug hunting or kissing it better. And, did I mention that no other mother looks so fine?

I Love Mum is written in rhyme of sorts. I had a practice before reading aloud to my underwear chomping little one and found it quite clunky with some awkward phrasing and expressions that could be hard for children to understand. I’ve read it a few times since and the words have grown on me. The flow of the prose leads a path through the pictures and over the pages. You just need to relax and go with it. Don’t expect each page to be self contained. This is a rhythmic poem, not a ditty and is all the more re-readable for it. Some of the phrases may challenge young children however, I think this is a positive thing – not everything has to be simplistic.

The illustrations in this book glow with warmth. There is a real variety of pictures – whole pages, small cameos, half pages with text beneath – and, my personal favourite, some double page spreads of the tigers’ street and their route to the park. The tigers are endearing and their world engaging.

Overall, I’m not sure whether reading this multiple times to my little boy will persuade him of my omnipotence or merely cause him to wonder how he got an inferior model for his Mum. Certainly, there’s a thin line between ‘awwwh’ and ‘urrrrgh’. I Love Mum manages, by a tiger’s whisker, to stay just on the ‘awwwh’ side, mainly because of the lovely illustrations but also because the prose avoids twee rhymes. I Love Mum is a good choice for a Mother’s Day present, especially if Dad is buying.

If you need more convincing that Mum's are great you could try I Love My Mummy by Giles Andreae and Emma Dodd.

Buy I Love Mum by Joanna Walsh and Judi Abbot at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy I Love Mum by Joanna Walsh and Judi Abbot at Amazon.co.uk.

Buy I Love Mum by Joanna Walsh and Judi Abbot at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy I Love Mum by Joanna Walsh and Judi Abbot at Amazon.com.


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