As I write and post this, I am 39 weeks pregnant with a baby boy: a younger brother to my 3-year-old daughter. I’m well past my ‘nesting’ phase of cooking frozen meals and making sure our diaper stash is stocked- my feet are swollen to hell, so the best thing for me to do at the moment is sit with my laptop and write book reviews. I thought it would be fitting to review another kids book, more specifically, one about an older sibling acquiring a younger, annoying sibling.
Runaway Baby Brother is written and illustrated by Katy Hudson, and let me say, I always have great respect for the artists who both write and illustrate their own kids books. Contrary to popular belief it is incredibly difficult to get a kids book published, so doing both sides of the work is impressive to say the least. Adults read picture books and think “I could write one of these”, but I’m here to tell you, you probably can’t (sorry). They are incredibly difficult to get right, regardless of what your adult brain might think. And because I’m an adult too, I always read these books to my daughter multiple times before I write out my review because she (and other children) are always the best judge of whether it is a worthwhile read.
I’ll admit when I first read this book I didn’t think much of it. It’s about a chicken who resents his baby brother, but when he finds himself outside alone and scared one night, he discovers his baby brother followed him outside, so this boosts his bravery and they accompany each other back home, the older brother thankful for the company. My adult brain was all like “this is so irresponsible! and unlikely the baby would keep quiet for that long”. My toddler however, memorized different parts of this book and asked to read it for 7 consecutive nights, so as mentioned above, I clearly have no idea what I’m talking about. This book is clearly a winner.
One thing both my daughter and I agree on are the illustrations because they are by far my favourite part. The baby chick lives in a half-shell which is his diaper (adorable!) and the text is bold, easy to read and varies in font to highlight certain sound effects-I have since learned this is a GREAT technique to keep kids interested. It seems simple, but you’d be surprised how few children’s books actually do this.
Most picture books have a moral or lesson, and this story taught me a very important lesson-adults just don’t get it, but kids clearly do.
*Please note this post contains affiliate links, and if you choose to purchase the book through Amazon I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.