We Sang You Home

illus. by Julie Flett. 26p. Orca. Oct. 2016. Board $9.95. ISBN 9781459811782.
Baby-Toddler—Van Camp captures the love and joy of new parents welcoming a baby into their lives. Told from the first-person perspective of two new parents, the story highlights what they hope to give to their child, from kisses to songs, while also depicting the sense of happiness that their child gives them. The final page concludes with a simple yet candid declaration: "Welcome to the world! We love you!" The writing is minimal but has a lyrical, musical quality, as Van Camp uses poetic, metaphoric language, such as the phrases, "Our forever home is inside of you" and "Through you we are born again." As a result, a good portion of the book may go over the heads of its intended audience and will be better appreciated by parents than young readers, making it more suitable for one-on-one sharing. Flett's illustrations, made using gouache on paper and digital collage, are muted and understated, matching the tranquil tone of the text. While some of the prose might be a little too abstract for young children to fully understand, the emotions of parenthood—including feelings of love, elation, and gratitude—are certain to be conveyed to them by the parents who share this tale with them.
VERDICT A lovely picture book that will resonate with parents and show young readers the profound, positive impact they have on their parents' lives.

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