Dear Girl, (Amy Krouse Rosenthal & Paris Rosenthal)

Hello friends, and Happy International Women’s Day! We wanted to pick the perfect book to celebrate, so our review today is of Dear Girl, written by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Paris Rosenthal, and illustrated by Holly Hatam, a simple yet empowering series of notes to girls of every age.

“Dear Girl,” each page begins, before imparting bite-sized wisdoms to its reader: “Keep that arm raised! You have smart things to say!”, “Look at yourself in the mirror. Say ‘thank you’ to something that makes you YOU”, and “Find people like you. Find people UNLIKE you.” Readers are encouraged to form supportive friendships, to ask questions, and to trust their instincts. And if they ever need encouragement, they can turn to any page in the book, and remember that they are appreciated, celebrated and loved for the dear girl that they are.

Beautiful. The late, great Rosenthal’s books are always tinged with a bit of sadness – each a reminder of what a lovely and profound writer she was. Yet reading this earnest, guileless, and heartfelt message to the special girls in our lives with JJ was more than enough to leave me misty-eyed by the end. So many positive messages are woven in: confidence, loyalty, kindness, wonder, individuality, inclusion, hope and more. It encourages girls to think and speak for themselves, and a particularly powerful page reminds them that they always, in any situation, have the right to say “NO”. The art keeps it simple and does exactly what it needs to do, using ink lines with mixed-media and paint embellishments to keep the art minimalist yet impactful. The length is perfect, and JJ and I both adored it. A lovely read to remind each girl of their power and potential, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved.

That’s Me Loving You (Amy Krouse Rosenthal)


Hello, friends! Sorry we missed our review yesterday, but JJ was having fun at her best friend’s birthday party. But we’re back, and today we’re reviewing the lovely That’s Me Loving You, written by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and illustrated by Teagan White, a beautiful story of a mother’s everlasting love for her child.

Written in rhyming text, the narrator speaks to her child about how a mother’s love always surrounds her them, even when the mommy isn’t there. A shining star is her wink. A clap of thunder is her cheering her child on. A soft breeze is blown kisses, and a butterfly’s wings are her hugs. So no matter where her child goes, no matter how long or how far, they can know that their mama is always with them, loving them.

What a sweet, timeless sentiment, and wonderfully executed. A mother’s unconditional love is always a classic subject for a book, but the notion that reminders of this love are in the world all around us makes this a special story with a great takeaway lesson for little ones. But what really steals the show is the absolutely darling art, showing each gesture of motherly affection to a different child, each illustration filled with sweet innocence and charm. The length is perfect, and while the ending is a bit abrupt, JJ and I both loved this one. A lovely story for mommies to share with their little readers, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved!

I Wish You More (Amy Krouse Rosenthal)


Hello, friends. Our book today is I Wish You More, written by the late, great Amy Krouse Rosenthal and illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld, a heartfelt meditation on the wishes parents hold for their babies.

I wish you more hugs than ughs. More ups than downs. More umbrella than rain. More stories than stars. Simple, earnest sentiments make up the text, with a loved one wishing the reader friendship, joys, and courage as they grow. The narrator wishes these things with all their heart, because their child is everything that they could wish for, and more.

Amy Krouse Rosenthal sadly passed away last month, and this sweet, tender book was recommended to us as one of her best works, and we must agree. It’s sentimental without being schmaltzy; sincere yet still whimsical. The endearing and playful art captures the small wonders and simple pleasures of childhood in a way that young readers can connect to and older ones can feel nostalgic for. The length is perfect for baby bookworms, and JJ really enjoyed it, especially the illustrations. This is a all-around lovely book that celebrates the hope we have for our children, and the endless possibilities that their futures hold. We loved it, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved.

Spoon (Amy Krouse Rosenthal)


Hello, friends! Our book today is Spoon, written by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and illustrated by Scott Magoon, a story about not letting greener pastures distract from one’s blessings.

Spoon is your average, everyday utensil. He lives in the cutlery drawer with his mom and dad, visits his Aunt Silver for dinner on Sundays, and has friends like Knife, Fork and Chopsticks. He’s mostly a happy sort, but sometimes Spoon feels like his friends have it better than him: Chopsticks are really unique, Knife gets to cut and spread, and Fork gets to do just about everything! It makes Spoon feel a bit crummy, but little does he know, his friends have their own jealousies of him as well!

Amy Krouse Rosenthal recently passed away, leaving behind a wonderful body of work that includes some fantastic children’s books, and this is a jewel among them. It’s about appreciating who you are, and we really enjoyed it. I loved that it made a point to say that EVERYONE has insecurities and envies others, noting that there’s nothing wrong about having those kinds of doubts; it’s how you choose to manage them that matters. It also encourages kids to think about their own talents and blessings before comparing themselves negatively to others, and remembering that differences are what make us all special and unique. The illustrations are adorable, and give a lot of life to a kitchen full of utensils. The length is perfect for baby bookworms, and JJ enjoyed this one quite a bit. We would definitely recommend it, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved!

Uni The Unicorn (Amy Krouse Rosenthal)


Hello, friends! Today, we read Uni The Unicorn, written by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and illustrated by Brigette Barrager, the story of a unicorn, a girl, and belief.

Uni the unicorn is like all the other unicorns: flowing mane, twinkling purple eyes, magical powers. But there is one thing that makes Uni different: she believes in little girls. All the other unicorns mock her, but Uni just knows that there is a special little girl out there. A little girl who, like her, looks to the night sky and dreams of a special friend.

Oh, boy. This is a pretty popular book, so I’m going to get some people who disagree, but we didn’t love it. There is some gorgeously colorful art, flipping the trope and having a unicorn believe in people was cool, and the length is good, but for positives, that was it for us.

In the meantime, the book lacks a satisfying conclusion. It bills itself as “A Story About Believing,” so I can understand why the author chose to never have Uni and her friend meet, but it’s a choice that ends the story rather abruptly. Furthermore, the book is extremely gendered. Uni believes in little girls, and only little girls. Apparently, little boys and unicorns are not meant to have special friendships. And, uncomfortably, Uni only seems to believe in little white girls. Her dream friend is blonde and blue-eyed, and all the drawings of little girls that Uni makes or looks at in books are light-skinned. In fact, the only time children of color make an appearance is as villains, taunting the little girl for believing in unicorns. So as far as gender and race representation, this one misses the mark, to say the least.

We had heard good things about this book and were looking forward to it, but it honestly just left me underwhelmed and slightly troubled. Even JJ didn’t seem very interested beyond our initial read-through. If you have a daughter who loves unicorns (and, again, only a daughter), this could be a fun read, but otherwise, not one we would recommend.