I Wonder: Celebrating Daddies Doin’ Work (Doyin Richards)

Hello, friends! Our book today is I Wonder: Celebrating Daddies Doin’ Work by Doyin Richards, a look at modern-day daddies and the way they care for and love their little ones.

While childrens’ lives are filled with wonderings, they may be surprised to find that their daddies wonder lots of things too! Daddies wonder if their children like the things they do together, or the photos they take, or the ponytail they put in their kiddo’s hair. They wonder if their babies understand why they may be firm or strict, or why they want to teach them to do new things and never stop dreaming or trying. But most of all, they wonder if their little ones understand just how must they are loved – but when they see a brilliant smile on their child’s face, they thank goodness that they get to be their children’s very own daddy.

Very sweet. Inspired by Richards’s blog, Daddy Doin’ Work, and filled with real photos of Richards and his followers with their children, the book features a fairly comprehensive look at modern dads, namely the affections and responsibilities of fatherhood. The text comes from a place of devotion, feeling, and hope, and isn’t afraid to show real emotion. I also respect that a few of the included examples of fatherly responsibilities bucked gender norm expectations, such as noting that daddies do hair, cook meals, and show empathy and comfort. In fact, I would have loved to see more of these, such as daddies playing tea party or dolls, but the examples that were there were refreshing. The photos also feature a healthy range of skintones, body types, and ethnicities, which is always welcome. The length is fine, and JJ enjoyed the photos very much. Overall, a cute look at fatherhood in the 21st century, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved.

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

Top 5: Books About Dads


Hello, friends! As June comes to a close, we’re here with our latest Top 5 List! Since many of you enjoyed last month’s Top 5 Books About Moms, and we celebrated Father’s Day in June, we decided to follow up with a list of our favorite books about dads and the special relationship they share with their little ones.

So without further ado, here are The Baby Bookworm’s Top 5 Books About Dads:

1. My Dad Thinks He’s Funny (Katrina Germein)


Dad jokes: love them or hate them, dads always seem to have a natural ability to make them. Be it puns that make us groan, goofy behavior that makes us blush, or the embarrassment of dads being daaaaads, we’ve all experienced the unique attempts at comedy that only fathers can provide. This is a great send-up of dad jokes, told from the point of view of an exasperated little boy and chock full of eye-rolling dad jokes. Tom Jellett’s collage-style illustrations create a unique world that is enjoyable and supports the humor well. It’s a sweet story with a moral that so many of us (especially those who have been through our teenage years) can relate to: while our dads can be terribly mortifying, we love them anyway. And yes, sometimes they can even make us laugh.

2. Daddy’s First Day (Mike Wohnoutka)


A hilariously sweet role-reversal story that made us (especially JJ’s daddy) grin. The first day of school can be a rite of passage that’s tough on everyone; especially, it seems, Oliver’s dad. After a summer of playing, reading, and spending time together, it’s time for Oliver’s first day of school, and he’s feeling pretty nervous. Oh no, Oliver’s not feeling nervous – but his dad is! Watching Oliver’s dad procrastinate dropping his son off at school, even projecting his feelings of trepidation onto his Oliver, is as humorous as it feels true; what parent doesn’t feel a bit unprepared to send their baby off to school for the first time? The art has a simple, earnest style that fits the guileless nature of the story. Overall, it’s a funny yet heartfelt tale of a devoted dad learning to let his little one grow, no matter how scary that might be.

3. Stella Brings The Family (Miriam B. Schiffer)


June is also Pride Month, so we definitely wanted to include this fantastic story that combines LGBTQ families and celebrating the many roles that dads can have in their children’s lives. When Stella’s class is putting together a Mother’s Day party, she isn’t sure who to invite: while she has two daddies whom she adores, she doesn’t actually have a mother. Speaking to her teacher and classmates, she realizes that her fathers and extended family give her all the love and support that she needs, so she decides to invite all of them. While appearing feather-light on the surface, this is a story with great depth that shows that children in loving non-traditional families are in no way “missing out” in the places that their families differ from the nuclear model. Adorably sweet illustrations by Holly Clifton-Brown and a well-paced story create a fantastic celebration of families and the many shapes and forms they come in, and how having two fathers who love you is a point of pride.

4. My Dad Used To Be So Cool by Keith Negley


This one is as much for the parents as it is for the kids, and we loved it. A little boy is pretty sure his dad used to be cool: he has tattoos, he used to ride a motorcycle, he even used to be in a band. But now he’s mostly just a normal, loving, chore-doing and only occasionally mortifying dad. The boy ponders what could have made his father change his lifestyle (the implied joke being, of course, that becoming a father did). Baby Bookworms like JJ will love the boldly-colored mod art style, and the former rockstars and rebels among us will definitely have a chuckle as the book reminds them of their pre-parenting wild days. There’s a sweet conclusion, too: while the glory days of rebellion may get left behind, being a loving daddy to a little one is classicly, timelessly cool.

5. Daddy Cuddle (Kate Mayes)


Sweet, simple, and full of charm. A little bunny is the first to wake in his house, and rushes to wake his father and start the day. But no matter what activities the bunny tries to rouse his dozing father with, nothing seems to tempt the sleeping parent to wakefulness. At last, after the little bunny gives a frustrated shout, Daddy wakes up and, chuckling, pulls his little one into bed for early morning snuggles – the best activity to start a sleepy day with. Darling watercolor art by Sara Acton and simple two-word dialogue make this a great story for even the youngest baby bookworms. A heartfelt ode to both the boundless early-morning energy of little ones and the quiet, cuddly moments between father and child.

So, what do you think? Did we miss any of your favorites? Do you have a book about mothers you would like to recommend to us? Let us know in the comments, or message us from our Contact page. Thanks so much, and happy reading!

Daddy Cuddle (Kate Mayes)

Hello, everybody! Our book today is Daddy Cuddle, written by Kate Mayes and illustrated by Sara Acton, a sweet and simple story of waking up.

A young bunny is the first to wake in his house, and rushes to his parents’ room to wake his father to start the day. “Daddy up?” he asks, but Daddy Bunny is still fast asleep. The bunny toddler sets about finding something to rouse his daddy out of bed, suggesting various activities like “Daddy ball?” and “Daddy bike?”, but still, nothing seems to bring Daddy Bunny to wakefulness. At last, the little bunny gives a frustrated shout, and Daddy Bunny wakes, chuckles, and brings his little bunny up for snuggles, and Young Bunny finds that sometimes the best morning activity is just a quiet Daddy cuddle.

This was an adorable little story that any family with wee early risers will relate to. The story is mostly told through the darling watercolor art, with the text primarily conveying Young Bunny’s dialogue in simple two-word sentences. This makes the length perfect for baby bookworms, and JJ really enjoyed it. It’s a very sweet father-and-child (whose gender is left ambiguous) story celebrating the early-morning energy of little ones, and the quiet, cuddly moments between daddies and their babies. Baby Bookworm approved!

Thunder Boy Jr. (Sherman Alexie)


Summer Reading Day 50: Today’s book was Thunder Boy Jr. by Sherman Alexie, a sweet story about a boy named, well, you can probably guess. He is named after his father, Big Thunder, and he struggles with this because while he loves his father and his father’s name, he wants a name of his own. It’s an adorable tale of a little boy and the things little boys love to do, with a meaningful subtext about honoring tradition and culture while still being an individual. The characters are Native American, and this is reflected beautifully through depictions of Native American art and tradition in the illustrations and text. Really cool book, great length for a one year old, and JJ liked it, so it’s a thumbs up!

No Matter What (Debi Gliori)


Summer Reading Day 42: Hello! Our book today was No Matter What by Debi Gliori. Those who know me know that I have a serious love of foxes (JJ’s nursery is fox/woodland themed), so I noticed this book awhile back when I was allowed to make a fox-themed children’s display at the library. Giving it a read, I knew I wanted to share it with JJ. A young fox, Small, asks their parent, Large (this is a nice touch – both foxes are genderless) if they would love them if they were grumpy, far away, a bug, etc. Of course, Large always answers that they would love their child “no matter what.”

It’s a sweet, short read with illustrations that are silly and lovely in turn. JJ loved it, so this one is a definite thumbs up!