"’I see you!’ says baby.
‘I love you,’ says Mama."

This imaginative and delightful early reader introduces simple, short sentences intended to be read aloud with young emerging readers, who will no doubt find joy in following along. As the author notes, hearing one’s child utter his or her first sentence is indeed a special milestone. After repeated readings, very young children should be able to read the simple words on their own and, with even more practice and exposure, be able to string the words into the provided sentences. These are sentences with elementary, basic ideas—perfect for those little ones just beginning their exciting journey towards being able to read. Many present straightforward concepts, such as “I see a bee. Owls perch on trees. Bears eat honey. The snail hides under the leaf.” Others play to the child’s sense of discovery, such as “Look at the sky! There is much to see.”

McCarthy’s book is beautifully illustrated, featuring fresh, clear, inviting scenes of mother and baby, baby’s favorite animals, and scenes such as the sky filled with hot air balloons. Each illustration, opposite the page containing the sentence, helps tell the story of what is going on. Because the book’s artwork is so striking and visually pleasing (rather like paintings), young readers and readers-to-be will find the book-sharing experience enticing. McCarthy has written a deceivingly simple, straightforward, engaging, and colorful children’s book for beginners. And it is one which, above all else, will bring out the joy in young early readers, as they begin themselves to sound out the individual word and, with repeated practice, the entire book of short sentences. This is a perfect early reader that parents, grandparents, teachers, and other caregivers can share with their young children.

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