Book Report: Little Thoughts with Love by Anne Geddes (1998)

Book coverC’mon, man, it’s like Checkov’s gun. If the man buys a twee collection of tweerific baby pictures as an artist’s “monograph” on Saturday, you have to know he’s going to browse it during the football game the next day. And, the best part is that this book, which counts in my simple annual total as much as Wuthering Heights or David Copperfield. Well, no, that’s not the best part.

All right, all right, all right. Anne Geddes has made a life of making books like this, books with staged photos of infants and newborns. She got her start at the turn of the century with calendars and whatnot, and one of her books was featured on Oprah. Which was a television program of some influence, although it’s mostly forgotten now.

So if you dig pictures of babies dressed like butterflies and perched on something looking like a tree branch or babies made to look like flowers posed in a field, this is definitely the book for you. Or if you’re interested in spending $4 to get a quick entry onto the annual reading list.

The best part about this book, though, was my family’s reaction to it and to my reading it. My beautiful wife recognized the photographer’s name and said the photographer’s works creeped her out. And as I sat on the sofa, watching the Packers victory this weekend, my youngest sat next to me, playing on his Nintendo Switch, and every couple of pages, I would say, “Aw, look at that baby dressed up like an insect!” and show it to him, and he would look but shake his head. That alone was worth the price of the book and the hit my reputation took for reading it.

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