Let Me Call You Sweetheart

By Mary Lee Donovan, Brizida Magro (illustrator)
Published: December 27, 2022
Publisher: Greenwillow Books, An imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
Pages: 40
ISBN: 9780063018785


Now available for preordering!

Let Me Call You Sweetheart: A Confectionery of Affection

What do you call the ones you love the most? Author Mary Lee Donovan and illustrator Brizida Magro’s Let Me Call You Sweetheart is a playful, sometimes silly, and always cozy picture book that features more than fifty terms of endearment from around the world. Perfect for bedtime, for building vocabulary, for baby showers, and for gift-giving all year long. A confectionery of affection!

Mi cielito, my angel, my pumpkin, my bean. My kitten, my sweetheart, my darling sweet pea. Everyone has a special term of endearment for those they love. What do you call your loved ones? Let Me Call You Sweetheart is an irresistible picture book to share with the ones you love—no matter what their age! Mary Lee Donovan’s rhythmic text keeps readers turning the pages, and Brizida Magro’s remarkable, sun-drenched illustrations present a cast of playful and charming children and animals, and an enchanting world full of friendship, love, and affection. Featuring more than fifty terms of endearment and expressions of love from around the world, Let Me Call You Sweetheart is perfect for baby showers, Valentine’s Day gift-giving, and bedtime storytime.

Includes a note to readers about the origin of the terms of endearment featured in the book, as well as source notes.

The Story Behind Let Me Call You Sweetheart

I don’t remember exactly how I came to write this book. It may have arisen out of research I was doing for another book, A Hundred Thousand Welcomes.

I stumbled upon pet names, or terms of endearment, in other languages that surprised and delighted me, so I started looking for more. Turns out, exploring playful expressions of fond affection is 100% heart-brightening work! No matter how many different alphabets and languages we might speak, our hearts yearn to speak playfully, fondly to the objects of our affection!

Things to think about as you read the book:

  • Do the terms of endearment in the book have things in common?
  • How many of the terms are based on real things?
  • How many terms sound entirely made-up or nonsensical?
  • Does your family ever use a term of endearment when speaking to you? How does it make you feel?
  • Do you ever use a term of endearment for someone you love? How are you feeling when you do?