Cover image for Wonderful you : an adoption story
Wonderful you : an adoption story

First edition.
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 29 cm
Reading Level:
AD 530 L Lexile
Added Author:
Adoptive parents promise to fill their new baby girl's life with love, security, and adventure.


Material Type
Call Number
Item Available
Book EASY MCL 1 1

On Order



A lyrical adoption story that tenderly addresses a baby's transition from the care of her birth mother to that of her adoptive parents.

This lovely poem illuminates the role of an adopted child's birth mother, respecting her choice to give her child to a loving family. We follow a mother's journey as she carries her child, searches for deserving parents, and ultimately creates a new family. The story offers a version of the process that is full of warmth, care, and joy.

An adoptive mother herself, author Lauren McLaughlin was glad for an opportunity to memorialize her family's own fairy tale, and Meilo So's ethereal illustrations breathe magic into an already wondrous experience.

Author Notes

LAUREN McLAUGHLIN grew up in the small town of Wenham, Massachusetts. After college and a brief flirtation with anthropology, she spent ten years in the film business as both a screenwriter and producer before turning her attention to novels and picture books. Visit her on the Web at

MEILO SO has illustrated several award-winning books, including Tasty Baby Belly Buttons by Judy Sierra; It's Simple, Said Simon by Mary Ann Hoberman; The Ugly Duckling, retold by Kevin Crossley-Holland; and Countdown to Spring! by Janet Schulman. Meilo So was born in Hong Kong and lives in England with her husband and daughter. Visit her on the Web at

Reviews 5

Publisher's Weekly Review

McLaughlin's story opens with the "Wonderful You" of the title still inside her birth mother, a "lady in blue" who searches the world for the perfect parents. Certain that she has found a man and woman who will provide "a home for my girl that is loving and kind," a dreamy handoff takes place in the clouds, the lady disappears on a large white bird, and the delighted couple imagines their future as parents of a daughter. McLaughlin's (the Mitzi Tulane, Preschool Detective series) lilting rhymes veer into the overly sentimental ("We were made for each other, as families are.../ each one, in its way, a story unfolding/ of laughter and teardrops and arms made for holding") but So (Follow the Moon Home) delivers ethereal visions of family life. Parents and daughter literally float through a life of snowy scenes, swing sets, and seashores. So's characters may defy the laws of gravity, but their radiant, almost musical joy speaks to the rewards of magical thinking, and the poignancy of emotional truths. Ages 3-7. Author's agent: Jill Grinberg, Jill Grinberg Literary Management. Illustrator's agent: Sally Heflin, Heflinreps. (Apr.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Horn Book Review

Though inspired by personal experience (per the author's note), McLaughlin endows her heartfelt rhyming story with a fairy-tale tone. A birth mother searches earnestly for the right adoptive parents; the new parents' then describe their delight and plans for the future with the child, "Wonderful You." So's illustrations build on the enchanted vibe, with the family floating joyfully, like figures in a Chagall painting. (c) Copyright 2018. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Booklist Review

In this sweet story, lilting two-line rhymes tell about a lovely lady in blue who searches for the perfect home for her about-to-be-born daughter, and finally finds it with the narrator of the story, the soon-to-be adoptive mother. Once the lady hands over their new daughter, Wonderful You, the love fest begins, with hugging, kissing, tickling, bicycle rides on rainbows, romps through fields of flowers in short, a celebration of pure joy, all due to Wonderful You. The bright pencil and watercolor illustrations, sometimes exuberant, sometimes dreamy, joyously spill across two-page spreads, aptly capturing the happiness generated through familiar activities: walks, birthday parties, school days. Young audiences will find reassurance in the love demonstrated by the new family, even as they are delighted by the more whimsical aspects of the story. The characters are pleasingly generic (Mom is a redhead, Dad has blueish-gray hair, and Wonderful You's hair is black). Equally effective for story time or for one-on-one snuggling, this is a lovely addition to adoption literature.--McBroom, Kathleen Copyright 2017 Booklist

School Library Journal Review

PreS-K-This poetic tribute to the joyful union of a family and their adopted child greets readers with colorful pen and watercolor vistas and the flowing movement of fantasy flight. "In a faraway land live[s] a lady in blue with a babe in her tummy named Wonderful You." She searches throughout the world for loving parents for her unborn daughter. Spare, lyrical, strategically placed text emphasizes the couple with the child and "a teddy named Boo." Bicycles, swings, rainbows, birds, and flowers fill the sky. Special days pass through the seasons while the child and her family build a cozy home, complete with snowman and snow palaces-a home in the dunes where the "shore hugs the sea." An author's note indicates McLaughlin's personal connection to the topic and celebrates her own family's adopted child. VERDICT This book is a general purchase where needed and an especially good option where there's a gap in adoption titles.-Mary Elam, Learning Media Services, Plano ISD, TX © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Review

A birth mother searches for the right parents for her unborn child in this story narrated by the adoptive mother."She looked north. She looked south. She traveled the world, / asking, Who'll be the parents of this beautiful girl? / I will sail by the moon and the stars till I find / a home for my girl that is loving and kind, / with a soft, cushioned bed and a teddy named Boo. // Nothing less than the best for Wonderful You.' " In a house by the sea, a loving couple awaits, but the birth mother must make sure they are just right. (The artwork here is slightly disturbing: the adoptive mother stretches out her arms toward the birth mother, who is riding on a crescent moon and hugging her pregnant belly; her expression looks shocked, almost as if her babe is being taken away.) After entrusting the baby to the adoptive parents, the birth mother rides a bird back home, and the tale turns to the new family and all that the future holds. The verses border on saccharine, and the rhyme scheme governs both word choice and syntax, making the text a challenge to read aloud. The artwork matches the flights of fancy with watercolor swirls and blotches, but the faces (all pale-skinned) are off-putting, not sweet or loving.Though open adoptions have become more common, they are still not the majority; this is more a single family's adoption story than one that speaks to all adopted children. (Picture book. 4-7) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.