To a small child, words are magical. And the most magical of all are the beloved, venerable words of Mother Goose. Now folklorist Iona Opie has gathered more than sixty treasured rhymes in their most perfect, honest form. From "Hey Diddle, Diddle" and "Pat-a-Cake" to "Little Jack Horner" and "Pussycat, Pussycat," these are familiar verses that have been passed from parent to child for generations; these are the rhymes that are every child's birthright.
With watercolors by Rosemary Wells that may prove equally enduring, MY VERY FIRST MOTHER GOOSE captures the simple joy and the sly humor that are the essence of Mother Goose. Parents and children will find themselves exploring this volume together, savoring delightful details and funny surprises on every page. This is a book that promises hours of quiet smiles and merry grins for readers of all ages.
There should be a law that requires every child to sit on Grandpa's knee as he chants "Trot, trot, to Boston; trot, trot, to Lynn." Grownups who still giggle at the thought of Little Jack Horner pulling a plum out of his Christmas pie, or who make a wish on a star, murmuring "Star light, star bright, first star I see tonight" know the secret. They're the ones who will be handing down those same nursery rhymes to their own children, preserving an age-old tradition. But no child should be left behind.
In world folklore authority Iona Opie's collection, these invaluable and ancient nuggets of childhood verse are bursting with new life. Quirky and sly, sweet, gentle, rollicking, silly... the range of rhymes is breathtaking. Winner of over a dozen prestigious awards, including a Parents' Choice Award and an ALA Notable Children's Book award, this wonderful book is charmingly illustrated by Rosemary Wells, best known for her Max books (Max's Bath, Max's Bedtime, Max's Ride). A solid repertoire of nursery rhymes should be de rigueur for any aunt, uncle, grandparent, or parent worth his or her salt. This book is a must, as is its companion volume, Here Comes Mother Goose. (Click to see a sample spread from My Very First Mother Goose. Illustrations & copy; 1996 by Rosemary Wells. Permission from Candlewick Press.) (Baby to preschool) --Emilie Coulter