Celebrate the heart connection between adopted children and the forever families who welcome them with kindness, care, and unconditional love in this powerful picture book from the author of Honey Baby Sugar Child.
Carol Olivia Clementine lives with Mama Rose. Mama Rose is everything—tender and sweet. She is also as stern and demanding as any good parent should be. In the midst of their happy home, Carol misses her mother and father. She longs to be with them. But until that time comes around, she learns to surrender to the love that is present. Mama Rose becomes her “home.” And Carol Olivia Clementine concludes that she loves Miss Rose, “just like a mama.”
This sweet read-aloud is, on the surface, all about the everyday home life a caregiver creates for a young child: she teachers Clementine how to ride a bike, clean her room, tell time. A deeper look reveals the patience, intention, and care little ones receives in the arms of a mother whose blood is not her blood, but whose bond is so deep—and so unconditional—that it creates the most perfect condition for a child to feel safe, successful, and deeply loved.
In this much-needed picture book about nontraditional families, Carol Olivia Clementine, a light-skinned black child, lives with Mama Rose, a darker-skinned black woman, "miles away" from Carol Olivia's parents. Though Carol Olivia misses her parents (why the family resides apart is never revealed), she is glad to live with Mama Rose, who takes care of her in all the ways a mama does: teaching life skills (making the bed, telling time), ensuring that she's well nourished ("there will be NO chocolate cake until I eat my veggies"), and otherwise providing for the girl's health and happiness ("Just like a mama, she combs my hair"). Brightly colored, expressive mixed-media illustrations capture the duo's vivacity and the strength of their love as the woman chases the child on a yellow bicycle. Ultimately, Carol Olivia concludes, Mama Rose is "just like a mama to me"; in fact, "Mama Rose is my home." A poignant author's note reveals Duncan's personal connection to the narrative and praises "fictive kin, adoptive parents, and guardians who have chosen to love and care for a child when they have no obligation to do so." Ages 4 8. \n