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Papa, Do You Love Me?
Papa, Do You Love Me?
by Barbara M. Joosse
Illustration by Barbara Lavallee

This story captures the universal love between a father and child. Set in Africa and featuring the Maasai culture, the beautiful watercolor illustrations, lyrical text, and enduring message are sure to make this an instant classic.
Age: 3 Year-olds | Title: Papa, Do You Love Me?  |  Author: Barbara M. Joosse  |  Publisher: Chronicle Books
This story captures the universal love between a father and child. Set in Africa and featuring the Maasai culture, the beautiful watercolor illustrations, lyrical text, and enduring message are sure to make this an instant classic.

While the setting of this sweet father-child book may be exotic and unfamiliar, the theme of a father's love is something that children completely understand. The story takes place in the African country of Tanzania and follows a child's many questions about how much his father loves him. As lovely watercolor images transport the reader to the African Serengeti, children will be amazed at the similarities they find between themselves and this child from the other side of the world. This is a wonderful introduction for preschoolers to different cultures while also demonstrating the universal themes of love and family.

Expect your child to have questions after reading this heartfelt story, perhaps both about how much you love them and various parts of the cultural aspects of this book. Several parts of the story may need some explanation, as it is unlikely that either your child or you know what a "birthright animal" or "calabash" are, but there is a handy glossary at the end of the story that allows you to find the best translation for your child.

With such an exotic and unfamiliar setting, I decided to pull up a world map to show Emily, the three-year-old I babysit, where Africa was. We talked about other things that we knew were from Africa, like two animals also featured in the book, the hippo and the lion.

--Abby

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