By Linda Gilleland, Illustrated by Leigh Ann Irish
Brown Books, $19.99, 41 pages
Baby Deer loves wandering the wilderness with her loving mother. But when Mama Deer doesn’t come back one night, Baby Deer begins to starve and the only shelter she can find is on Grannie and Grandpa’s ranch. They nurse her back to health. After befriending the horses and Belle the dog, Baby Deer meets 3-year-old Grace who renames her Pineapple. Author Linda Gilleland writes I Love You, Baby Deer for her granddaughter Grace. She shares the story of a girl and her deer with readers of all ages. The layout alternates between a page of text and a full page illustration by Leigh Ann Irish. Her warm portrayal of a unique friendship between animals and humans speaks to the heart. When Grace is older, Pineapple moves with her to the suburbs! There she meets even more friends – Scarlet (a grumpy cat), Midge (an old black Lab) and Lola the Rat (a tiny Chihuahua). Together they walk through the neighborhood, all in a row. The book ends with a beautiful photograph of Grace and Pineapple, bonding together. This touching story teaches readers of all age about the importance of love, trust, and friendship.
Reviewed by Kathryn Franklin