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The Baby's Catalogue

3.90  ·  Rating details ·  602 ratings  ·  44 reviews
This paperback edition of the bestselling picture book The Baby's Catalogue by the iconic British husband and wife picture book team Janet and Allan Ahlberg, creators of Peepo!, is filled with easily recognizable objects - perfect for your baby or toddler!

Mums and Dads, breakfasts and bedtimes, pets and toys and prams and swings - and lots and lots of other fascinating thi
Paperback, 28 pages
Published September 27th 1984 by Puffin (first published April 1st 1983)
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Average rating 3.90  · 
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 ·  602 ratings  ·  44 reviews

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Sep 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Infants & Up
Recommended to Allison by: 1001 CBYMRBYGU
Shelves: 1001-cbymrbygu
Diversity of people and things, breastfeeding (!), men changing diapers (!!), naked babies taking baths (!!!), the only thing it's missing is a biracial couple! How this book stays on the shelves is beyond me. I cannot believe it hasn't been banned repeatedly. It is fabulous. I rarely give 5 stars but I was taken completely aback by this book. I found it completely refreshing.
While I have indeed found Janet and Allan Ahlberg's The Baby's Catalogue fun and often delightfully smile-inducing (as well as also rather much enlightening with regard to all of the specifically British themes and vocabulary choices), there is just not enough of a featured storyline and plot (well, there really is no plot whatsoever) for me to consider more than a high three star rating (especially since the illustrations, which do seem to make up the bulk of The Baby's Catalogue, whilst bright ...more
Mar 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-ya
Dusting off my daughter’s favorite book as a toddler, in anticipation of soon visiting my brand new, first grandchild, a little girl who is much loved already. I look forward to sharing many many books with her over the years!


Sep 22, 2011 rated it liked it
A cute collection of the people, things, and events in a baby's day from waking up and seeing Mom and/or Dad, to eating, playing, seeing siblings, taking baths, etc. (I think the illustrations of the food and plates, teacups, etc. is especially riveting!) It's not really a story (though it does progress from morning to night) but more a "catalogue" of these things in a baby's life. The illustrations are enjoyable, if not my favorite style, and I appreciate the diversity shown here, with families ...more
Mar 09, 2020 rated it it was ok
Although this book has nice drawings, it wasn't coherent or not coherent enough for my taste. It was hard to follow what direction the writer wanted this book to go. I have seen better books with a story or a story to follow.

This book is in the 1001 Children's Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up challenge I am doing.
Feb 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
Based on the title alone, I didn't expect to love this book. But I've discovered a children's book that I think an adult can enjoy as much as a child! There are more pictures than words in this book, and we follow five families through their day by one or two words on a page. My favorite part as an adult, however, was the quirky illustrations. This book isn't full of happy smiling babies with perfect families who never make messes. There's one baby crying in the stroller, another trying to escap ...more
Ema Ahmed
Nov 04, 2017 rated it liked it
This is a simple, yet lovely illustrated picture book which has a lot of potential.

I can see this being used effectively with EAL learners, as this will allow them to make connection with familiar objects from home with the correct vocabulary.

In addition, I can see this being used effectively amongst young learners, as this has potential of promoting discussion of the illustrations.
Sep 15, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: younger-kids
Really sweet illustrations. Not a lot of text.
Jun 01, 2017 rated it liked it
A book all about the things I like and use as a baby. It was okay. I picked it up on my first trip to the library.
Jenna Mills
Apr 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Just gorgeous. Love the dated pics. Especially the nappies. Gave me an extra smile to think that we had used cloth too, so that pic isn't alien to Little
Oct 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Fun look at a variety of objects common to a baby's everyday life. I really liked the soft colors though some of the objects are pretty dated and others are very British.
I just love this book, which I have just bought for my baby niece. It is perfect for sharing with a very young child. It is a collection of themed pictures around a baby's day (a page of pictures of babies, mums and dads, mornings etc, through to baths and bedtimes, back to mums and dads and babies). It shows a variety of families (working mums, stay at home dads), cultural backgrounds and, amazingly, a breastfeeding mother which I had never noticed before!

The copy I have bought is a board book,
Louise (A Strong Belief in Wicker)
An odd little picture book aimed at the baby, toddler set. An illustrated list of things babies know- babies, mums and dads, nappies, mirrors and pets, prams and swings. This book originally published in 1982 is like a time capsule from another, simpler time. Cloth nappies hang on the line. The toys are wholesome, non-electronic ones- rubber ducks, spinning tops, teddy bears. The prams all look like versions that could be in the original Mary Poppins movie. The best page by far for the parent re ...more
Donna Davis
Oct 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children, reviewed
The familiar is so dear to us, especially when we are tiny and the whole world--even some things in our own HOMES--is full of the unknown. This book is full of items that are known to most babies. Yours may differ in a few places (for one thing, the writer is British, but it doesn't really get in the way, especially being so devoid of text). When little ones are learning to speak, they are overjoyed by this book because THEY KNOW THE ANSWERS!

My sixteen-year-old still isn't ready to part with her
Jasmine Caines
May 01, 2015 rated it liked it
This book is a collection of pictures about a baby’s life. I enjoy the honesty in depiction of a baby’s life, particularly with the images you wouldn’t perhaps stereotypically expect to see such as a baby breastfeeding, a dad changing a nappy and a working mum.

This book would be ideal for showing to babies or nursery children or perhaps to children who are expecting or have baby brothers and sisters at home, particularly to describe their needs from their parents. This would certainly be an asse
Elen Caldecott
Apr 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s
This is a great book to read to young babies in order to aquaint them with the whole book experience. There is no plot to follow, just simple words, with lots of pictures. For the adult, you can connect the pictures of the various families into a narrative (if you want). For the baby, there is recognition of the objects they use daily and the joy of sharing a book with someone they love. Thoroughly recommended.
Jun 13, 2012 rated it liked it
1001 Children's Books list
Age group: 0-3
Their list: 22/1001
My list: 17/1001

Why they say you should read it? Soft watercolor illustrations. Shows a picture of each family, why they're special, and embellished their story in a way that kids notice but adults don't.

That's a bold claim isn't it? In a way that kids notice, but adults don't. Turns out, although this book was okay...

My kids thoughts: they tended not to notice it.
Dichotomy Girl
Feb 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
I was afraid that at 3 1/2 A. would be a bit past this book, but she actually was quite fascinated with the different families. I really liked how it depicted breast-feeding (even showing the side of the breast in the illustration). And I was reminded how much things have changed, when a few pages later the bath-time pictures showed a fully naked baby boy. (This always makes me sad, even though I understand)
The Baby's Catalogue is a wonderful book for adult and baby to read together. Adults can interpret the cartoons and babies can connect pictures to words. The illustrations are funny and include 'daddy's coffee" and "mommy's wine" and a nursing baby. Funny book, a little dated, but over all it has held up well.
Hmmm, I worked at a kids' show half the day then got home and randomly picked this book up to read! It's a cute look at the lives of some very English babies (see the 'Teas' page!), with pages devoted to Mums and Dads, Brothers and Sisters and Toys, Baths and Bedtimes, etc. Good babykins stuff. My favourite page was simply titled 'Accidents'; classic!
Kristine Hansen
Feb 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
A bit of a snapshot of another time (which is fine. It's fun to revisit) this book is just a series of pictures about things in the life of a baby. Love the diversity and yay for breastfeeding moms! The accident page was definitely one that's interesting and a little too real. I think parents will appreciate this book more than children will, but that's ok.
Mostly pictures. Very nice alternative to the photo image word books that are so popular right now. The pictures require an adult to interpret them to toddlers. It's a nice book for parents to share with their little ones. :)
Feb 09, 2012 added it
Shelves: e-picture-books
The Baby's Catalog is comprised of very cute picture in categories, like babies, lunches, toys, and accidents! Lots of cute pictures to interact with toddlers in identifying the things and what is happening.
Enjoyed most of the illustrations, but not the ones in the accidents section--they bothered my daughter, but she is not a baby and thinks through what is happening and asks why those kids were left unsupervised to get in those situations.
Mar 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children
I'm giving it four stars for the artwork. There is no plot. It's really a lot of pictures of things babies do and of their parents. It looks rather like an assignment for art class - draw as many examples of a baby carriage as you can imagine.
Sarah Adamson
Jun 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned
This is the most fantastic book. I remember having it as a child and my in-laws found a board book version for our daughter. It's full of beautiful pictures illustrating all aspects of a baby and young child's life. Simple, lovely and fun.
Aug 03, 2008 rated it liked it
Simple, cute, and sweet.
Sep 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: fans of babies
Shelves: children-s-books
I still love this book, and I'm an adult! The illustrations are darling and there is so much to look at. Fun book!
Feb 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens, 1001
loved it! pictures of daddies and mommies in all walks of life, nursing moms and cloth diapers pictured. yay for janet and allan ahlberg!
Inspired by their own baby's fascination with catalogues, the Ahlberg's created a baby-friendly one.
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Janet Ahlberg (1944-1994) was a British children's book illustrator, and the co-creator, together with her husband Allan Ahlberg, of the best-selling Jolly Postman series. Born as Janet Hall in Yorkshire in 1944, she studied at Sunderland Technical College, where she met Ahlberg. The two married in 1969, and began to work together, publishing their first co-venture - The Old Joke Book - in 1976. ...more

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