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Kitten’s First Full Moon: Baby’s First Great Board Book

Kevin Henkes’ “Kitten’s First Full Moon” is about just that. We follow Kitten as she tries to reach the moon, a large distant vision she’s mistaken for a bowl of milk. This book should be a classic. There’s enough repetition for a sing-songy reading and enough variation that it doesn’t drive the grown-up readers mad. You can’t ask for much more, but this book has more.

This book is made for newborn baby eyes. It takes babies about 5 months to see color, so this book doesn’t have any. Instead the images are in black and white, with high contrast silhouettes that are easily recognizable.

ID: The cover of “Kitten’s First Full Moon” on top of a pastel backdrop. The cover of the book is a black and white illustration of a kitten in front of a full moon. There’s a Caldecott Medal.

I have such a soft spot for this book. In the early and panicked days of parenthood, this was the first book that got through to our otherwise unimpressed baby. I will forever see his newborn eyes following the pages. It was like magic, really.

Now that newborn is a toddler, but the repetition keeps his attention well. One of the repeated words is milk, which is a very important word for lots of babies and toddlers. When my mom reads this book to Q, he signs milk proudly when the word is read. Of course, this means both Q and Kitten have confused milk and the moon. But that’s alright. I trust it’s temporary.

The verdict:

Grown Up Stars: 5/5
Kid Stars: 5/5

Age recommendation: 0-3 years old


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