Friday, June 10, 2016

Review: Growing Together by Taro Gomi (best-selling author of Everyone Poops)

Growing Together
4 Stories to Share
by Taro Gomi
Phaidon Press
Picture Books
ages 2 to 5
A total of 96 pages

A brand-new set of refreshingly off-beat picture books from the best-selling author of Everyone Poops
From best-selling children's author Taro Gomi comes a set of four new books: Playing, Imagining, Growing, and Sharing.
Each book features a different pair of family members loving and learning from one another... seasoned with the honesty, warmth, and eccentricity that Gomi so beautifully delivers. A little boy imagines the journeys that he and his father go on together; a little girl speculates about her mother's life before she became a mom; an older brother thinks back to when he was the baby; and sisters attempt to halve and share everything in their path. Each humorously narrated story is as messy, unpredictable, and endearing as everyday life with a child!
Created for ages 2-5 years

Or purchase from Phaidon Press directly at:


This is a box set of four books: Exploring, Growing, Sharing, Imagining. Each of these books is easy to read, simple text with lovely illustrations. The quality is a wonderful, making it a real treat to simply pick them up and hold them in the hand.

My kids got to these books before I did (which is always a good sign), and although they're out of the intended age range, they still flipped through them several times to point out pictures and various things. So I'll take that as a thumb up from the kids.

These are easy books in the sense that even beginner listeners will understand what's going on. The illustrations are also simple while staying colorful and adding just the right amount to the text. Each book covers a topic young kids will recognize from their own lives. They will have no trouble sympathizing with the situations and recognizing themselves and their environment in the pages.

The messages are very subtle and are geared to help kids become aware of their relationships with the people around them, activities and simply life. Most center around family members. Everything is presented in a positive light, bringing about a warmth which generates a smile. But nothing is polished over either. Especially in the book Growing, the 'activities' of a toddler's life are stated bluntly (which surprised my kids) but with a gentle naturalness which was simply nice to see.

Summed up, this is a great box set for toddlers and small kids. The stories are simple but exactly that what this age group can relate to and will want to see/hear over and over again.


"I think you’ll really like these books. I mean like them, like them. They’re from the ’80s! They’re from Japan! In fact, they’re from legendary and groundbreaking author Taro Gomi! Yes, he is best known for the bestselling EVERYONE POOPS, but it was the first of its kind and I daresay the most dignified. Taro Gomi takes the high road. Be it bodily functions or brothers, sharing a cat or soaring in a rocket ship, Gomi’s subject matter is presented in the most sparse and yet satisfying way. He is a master of truth, a conveyer of warmth, and without an ounce of saccharine sweetness. There’s nothing ooey-gooey here, nothing that warrants an eye roll. If other books in this family category feel as if they’re written by an overly doting grandparent, these feel more like they’re written by a parent, at the end of a long but rewarding day. Like I said, you’ll really like these books…that isi, until you have read them 10 times in a row… which you will, because young readers are obsessed!"
“Strikingly illustrated and pleasingly subtle, these books will grow with their readers.” —Kirkus, Cecily Kaiser, Publishing Director of Phaidon's Children's Books

All about Taro Gomi!!!

Taro Gomi is Japan's most successful children's book author-illustrator, with more than 400 books to his credit, including his perennial bestseller, Everyone Poops. He has won several awards including the Sankei Children's Book Award and the Graphic Prize at the Bologna Children's Book Fair. He lives in Tokyo.

Find out more at. . .

Instagram: @Phaidonsnaps 
Twitter: @Phaidon 
Facebook: @Phaidoncom

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