They have been so buried in Boston snow, I thought I’d send a G’ma envelope of warmth—sibling warmth. I’ve recently become fond of Olivier Dunrea’s gosling world (see Gossie and Gert review: Sending Sun to Boston). He’s just released a small-sized sibling book, Gemma & Gus (HMH; ages 1-3) “Gemma is a small yellow gosling. She is the big sister. Gus is a smaller yellow gosling. He is the little brother.” The two are off to explore the world. Generally Gemma is pretty patient, but in a moment of frustration she honks, “ Don’t keep following me!” And then Gus leads—until they decide to explore together. Simple sentences and drawings illustrate the complexity of leadership in sibling relationship.
I grew my children up on the exploits of Rosemary Well’s sibling bunnies, Max and Ruby. The arrival of Max’s Special Spring (Grosset, ages 3-5) updated me. Now these bunnies star in a series on Nick Jr. In this book adventure, they seem unchanged from the days I read aloud. Ruby is keyed into the world’s realities as she tries to clean up and compost the yard when it’s “almost spring.” Max is mildly clueless and more excited about his truck. And once again, he proves wisest in the end, carting things not to the compost, but recycling in his own way. His pile of leaves, twigs and grapevines prove useful for nesting birds.
And a bit of sibling interaction will be required in Benji Davies’ Bizzy Bear: Zookeeper(Nosy Crow, ages 1-3). “Bizzy Bear, Bizzy Bear at the zoo. Bizzy Bear, Bizzy Bear I see you.” As the cheery bear trots around the zoo there’s simple rhyming that should work well for Baby Zach. Catie can operate the sturdy board book pull tabs that reveal a host of hidden animals.