by Ann Stott

Candlewick Press, $14.99, 32 pages

When a young child begins to do things for themselves, it is an exciting time in their lives. Doing “big kid” things is a step towards becoming independent. But there is always a special link between parents and children that does not disappear with age. Ann Stott celebrates this relationship in her book I’ll Be There.

During a walk together, a young boy asks his mother if she pushed him in a carriage when he was a baby. She responds that when he was little, she did all kinds of things for him. She pushed him on the swings, she dressed him, and fed him squished peas. Now there are many things that he can do on his own. The little boy is proud as he recalls what he can do: tie his shoes, pick out his own clothes (even if they don’t always match!), and take showers. Illustrator Matt Phelan’s watercolor artwork is stunning. It is simple (but far from simplistic!) and the colors are relaxing and beautiful. Parents and children alike will love the main message that no matter how old you get, your mom and dad will be there for you.

Reviewed by Kathryn Franklin

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