Today’s book is a big book. It’s called that actually. It is thick, full of childhood rhymes, and poems, and stories, and recipes, and everyday things. It is the perfect storybook for little children. A lovely collection of nursery rhymes, even if you already have too many on your shelves. (Is there such a thing as too many books of any kind?) I was so pleasantly delighted by this storybook, and it is a wonderful gift for any small child in your life. Take a peek at Sylvia Long’s Big Book for Small Children, 2018.

What is it about?

The collection begins with a “Good Morning” poem. A lovely way to greet each morning and especially each child as they wake. The pages that follow are a variety and visual delight. There is a page of clothes for the day. A poem about book and toys. Another page about making pancakes and an actual pancake recipe as well! Every page turn greets you with a new spread and a new concept. 

Sprinkled throughout the individual spreads, there are a few classic stories: The Three Little Pigs, The Little Red Hen, and Goldilocks and the Three Bears. These are such a fun addition, short and classic, but also lightly edited with Ms. Long’s touch. The Three Little Pigs are all women and the Little Red Hen and the Three Bears’ stories both have recipes to accompany them!

Why I picked it

There are so many delightful touches throughout the book. I adore all the individual items pages. Those kinds of books were a particular favorite of mine as a child and this one would have stolen my heart.

There is also such a great array of topics covered! Emotions, letters, indoor, outdoor, fauna, museums, opposites… it is an amazing span. I enjoy looking through it all so much and it gives me even greater joy thinking about children approaching this book! It is such a thoughtful arrangement of pages. Reading it aloud, you can choose your own adventure in a way: point to items and name them, or sing-song a simple poem, or listen to a classic story, or discuss the things the child can do at home or a garden or a museum even! This makes for such a pleasant reading experience as you can fit the read to the mood, the length of time, or just go to a favorite page.

And I would be remiss not to mention the quality and beauty in Sylvia Long’s illustrations. Her watercolor and ink work has such a timeless quality to it. Detailed, relatable, humorous, and unique; her illustrations are a joy on every page.

Who will love this?

The collection is intended for small children. My best guess would be 2-5, but I also wouldn’t limit it to those. A book like this is perfect to start out with and as the child grows, it becomes their classic. This is most definitely on my favorite baby gift list now. I’ve been unconscienably hoarding this in my to-review stack; but the few times it has been visible, my four year old has stolen it away to her bed for quiet reading time. Always a good sign of a lovely book.

Bonus Gift Pairings

You really don’t need much for a gift pairing with this book. It is so full in and of itself. I picture a tender, cozy setting when you read this, so perhaps a sweet little stuffie to snuggle. I could also see pairing this with a little album that the child can include pictures of their own favorite people or places or what-not. 

Thanks for reading. Hope to see you back tomorrow for the next book from this year in my 25 Days of Favorite New Picture Books countdown!