Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Little Miss Austen and Little Master Shakespeare, by Jennifer Adams

Title: Little Miss Austen: Pride & Prejudice and  
Title: Little Master Shakespeare: Romeo & Juliet
Author: Jennifer Adams, writer; Alison Oliver, illustrator

Genre: Fiction (Classic Lit / Educational)
Publisher/Publication Date: Gibbs Smith (2011)
Source: My public library

Rating: Loved.
Did I finish?: I did, because I can count to ten.
One-sentence summary: Two classics, boiled down to ten items.

Do I like the cover?: Yes, they're adorbs!

Buy, Borrow, or Avoid?: Buy!

Why did I get this book?: Hormones + classic lit + adorable illustrations.

Review: Try not to judge me too hard, but I fell in love with these adorable baby board books while babysitting this past weekend, and I was deeply saddened that the children I had knew how to count and stuff. I'm a sucker for things like this, too, even though I don't want to be, and the sampler-esque feel to the Austen cover and the paper doll-style art of both books just charmed me from the start.

So, how nuanced can a counting book be, right? About half of each book is specific to the story (four marriage proposals, from the Austen, for example, or five friends, from the Shakespeare) and the other half is general cutesy kid-ness (seven horses or eight musicians, whatever). (And yes, I did pose my pictures, only because my table was a crumb-laden mess and how pretty would that have been??) (And finally, my favorite page from the Austen book: ten.) Adorbs! So, not a ton of substance, but a bunch of cute, which works for me.

(They're coming out with Jane Eyre, too. I kind of can't wait.)

I judge their tag line, however: "Baby Lit™ is a fashionable way to introduce your baby to the world of classic literature." Really? Fashionable? I didn't know there was an unfashionable way to introduce my baby to classic lit, but then again, I'm not the trendy one of my circle.


  1. Little Miss Austen looks so cute! I'll keep it in mind for gifting, as sadly, my daughter is much too old for it now.

  2. @Anna: I know! All the children in my life are counting. Jerks.

  3. Lol, adorable!! :D I am lost for words

  4. @Blodeuedd: I know, I died too!

    @JoAnn: Isn't it adorable beyond words? They totally removed the suicide part from Romeo & Juliet so it's not really a retelling so much as an excerpt, perhaps, and who knows how they'll handle Jane Eyre...but still...the cute!

  5. These sound hilarious and wonderful and adorable! I think board books really need to be as much fun for parents as for kids, because truthfully, the kids care more about who is reading to them than about the book, and the books are too often mind-numbing drivel for the adults that have to read them hundreds of times in a row. Huzzah for these charming books!

  6. Austen Board Books? Judge you? I can't thank you enough! My cousin is a librarian with a new baby that is getting this for Christmas! Thanks, as usual, for the wonderful review!

  7. OMG, must get these for my little one who is not counting yet! perfect

  8. Oh these are just awesome and rad! Can I say rad anymore, or is was that one of the words that was relegated to the 80's? Anyhow, these books are adorable, and I think I need them. Great review today!

  9. The fashionable way introduce babies to classic lit? These books should be a must-have for mothers everywhere. LOL.