So Much

Common Sense Media says

Joyful read-aloud about extremely loving family.





What parents need to know

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this book introduces family members assembling for a joyous birthday gathering.

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What's the story?

Everybody loves the plump little baby--"SO MUCH!" When family members come to visit they can't resist squeezing him, kissing him, tossing him up on their shoulders, and dancing him around. His cousin wrestles with him, and his grandma says she wants to eat him up! A joyful read-aloud about a black family whose members delight in one another's company.

Is it any good?


This tale is told from the point of view of a sweet butterball of a boy about 18 months old, with red overalls and kissable little bare feet. This observant tyke notices how each relative plays with him in a different way. This is clearly a loving family: In every scene, someone has an arm draped around someone else's shoulders. The last picture -- Mom and Dad gazing at their sleeping boy -- is sweet without being saccharine.

Helen Oxenbury's gouache watercolors are painted in lovely deep shades of red, brown, maroon, purple, and orange. She brings each family member to life as an intriguing individual. The baby's pretty mom, wearing a short, elegant white dress and high heels, seems a shade quieter than the rest of her family.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the different ways that everyone in the family plays with the toddler. Talk about the people in your family and the different ways they like to play.

Book details

Author:Trish Cooke
Illustrator:Helen Oxenbury
Genre:Picture Book
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Candlewick Press
Publication date:January 1, 2000
Number of pages:41
Publisher's recommended age(s):4 - 7

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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