“A classic tribute to a mother’s unconditional, but human, love for a child.”
A young girl explores just how unconditional her mother’s love is in this classic tale written by Barbara M. Joosse and illustrated by Barbara Lavallee. Set in the frozen Alaskan arctic, the story incorporates Inuit details in costuming and environment, like parkas and mukluks, ptarmigan eggs, and umiaks and ermines. With queries ranging from innocent accidents like breaking eggs, to mischievous deeds like dousing the lamp, to outlandish scenarios like becoming a polar bear, a young girl explores the enduring nature of her mother’s love, which in every situation, is unabated and never-ending, though with a refreshing, realistic frankness that makes the tale enduring. “Then, Dear One, I would be very angry. But still, I would love you.” Joosse’s setting is original, and the progression from sincere to extreme hypotheticals makes the story development engaging. Her dialogue demonstrates an admirably honest and vulnerable relationship between mother and child, while Lavallee’s colorful, exaggerated illustrations give the story an emotional, dynamic aspect. Characters feature expressive faces—note the mother’s gasp as her daughter trips, for example—and dynamic postures—like the daughter craning her neck to look up at her mom, who stands high above with her hands on her hips.
This beloved story of a child testing the limits of her independence, and a mother who reassuringly proves that a parents love is unconditional and everlasting is a perfect first book for toddlers.
This is a lovely book! Timeless and universal in its exploration of the unconditional love a mother has for her child. The text is rich with details characteristic of arctic culture with are richly represented in the illustrations as well. I love everything about the stunning illustrations from the beautiful patterns on the dresses to the gentle way the mother’s body seems always to be curving around her precious child. This book makes a terrific baby gift, especially for a baby girl!
This is a classic tale of the unconditional love of a parent for a child. The illustrations by Barbara Lavallee are unique and memorable, and Barbara M. Joosse’s story introduces readers to authentic aspects of Inuit culture by including details like ptarmigan eggs and mukluks.