In the grand tradition of Marla Frazee’s The Boss Baby (2010), Kate Beaton’s King Baby (2016), and others, a pair of overwhelmed new parents navigate their infant’s attempts to communicate…Both amusing and endearing; caregivers and close acquaintances of newborns will feel seen—and heard.
Geisel Honor Book author LaReau’s understated text highlights the frustrating mysteries of early infancy, leaving Caldecott Medal winner Cordell to reveal the situation’s inherent humor. Using ink and watercolor, he portrays the characters as suitably goofy (the performers wear costumes and makeup throughout), while still remaining human in their desperate attempts to comfort their newborn…Families with colicky younger siblings will no doubt recognize this behavior, and look forward to a hopefully quieter future.
Even clowns may find themselves rearing a fussy child, but all is not lost: communities can pitch in, and children can find their way. And when all else fails, try thunderous applause.
Full of silliness to enjoy in both art and text, the story may resonate on another level with families who have known the struggle of settling a screaming infant.
—The Horn Book
Cordell’s scribbly ink and watercolor gives the characters lanky, exaggerated features and the circus a wild, quirky backdrop to Baby Clown’s colicky behavior; in spite of the silly setting and events, older siblings will recognize the struggle Baby Clown’s parents face as they attempt to tamp down Baby Clown’s incessant tears.
—Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books