Now (Antoinette Portis)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Now by Antoinette Portis, a lovely meditation on the simple pleasures of living in the moment.

An exhilarating breeze blows through a little girl’s hair; this is her favorite breeze. She holds a crimson autumn leaf the same span as her face; this is her favorite leaf. With each new object, sensation, or activity, the little girl proclaims each as her favorite – the tree because she is swinging from it, the mud because she is squishing it between her toes, the moon she is gazing up at. Each moment she is currently in is her favorite, because each is what she is experiencing right now… and because of who she is experiencing it with.

This is a simple story with a quiet and somewhat unassuming presence, but it will surprise you: it’s filled with quiet, guileless elegance and a phenomenally satisfying emotional payoff. While the tone definitely suggests themes of zen or mindfulness, the truth is that it does a great job of embodying the way little ones see the world – that each moment is their most important yet – and how we as adults impact this. It’s an enlightening perspective for both age groups to consider. Portis’s art echoes this, capturing both the trivial and the sublime, and examining the magical details that children notice and adults all too often overlook. The length is great, JJ adored the art, and the last page is a stunner for anyone who loves to read with their child. Thoughtful, warm, and full of wonder, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved!

Best Frints In The Whole Universe (Antoinette Portis)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Best Frints In The Whole Universe by Antoinette Portis, a funny tale about conflict between friends – err – “frints.” 

On the planet Boborp, there are no two better frints (friends) than Omek and Yelfred. Why, they’ve been frints since they were little blobbies (babies). However, sometimes frints can fight, using teef (teeth) even, such as when one frint schmakles the other’s brand new spossip. Can these frints make amends?

This book was definitely silly, but still a great story about friendship. Right off the bat, the made-up language of Boborp (easily deciphered through English similarities and context) is fun and goofy, and sure to give slightly older littles a chuckle. There is also the great way that the text compares the Boborpian (?) way of friendship with ours (such as biting and hitting being an acceptable method of fighting to aliens, but it is certainly not here on Earth), essentially providing some basic friendship do’s and don’ts. The length is just fine for smaller readers, and JJ loved the brightly-colored extraterrestrials and their world. This one is fantastic for little fans of monsters or aliens, or anyone who could use a good primer about friendship and sharing. Baby Bookworm approved!