Catch That Baby! by Nancy Coffelt, illustrated by Scott Nash
Starting from the title pages, Rudy’s mom has to catch him to get him into the bath. But once the bath is over, the real chase begins as “Nudie Rudy” runs through the house. Mom tries to catch him, but he runs into the living room. His Mom and brother run after him, but he’s into the kitchen. Now the dog, his father, and his sister join the chase. But Rudy is off into the back of the house, filled with plants. Now grandma and grandpa help look, because Rudy has disappeared. What in the world could he be up to now?
Coffelt’s text ties this wild naked baby chase closely with The Gingerbread Man as more and more characters join in trying to catch Rudy. The story telling is split between narrative and dialogue, shown in speech bubbles. This keeps the pace of the story racing along with Rudy from page to page.
Nash’s art has bright colors and a comic book feel to its lines. He uses objects and the dog to cleverly block any frontal nudity from view, instead showing chubby legs, flying feet, and a bare bottom.
There is a real humor to the book, so much so that you can almost hear the giggle of this naked little racing boy. The twist at the end is endearing and a natural part of the story. A great pick for toddlers, this book is appropriate for ages 2-4.
Reviewed from copy received from Aladdin.