Not the first book for adults to masquerade as a children’s book, but one of the more interesting.

READ REVIEW

WHEN MY BABY DREAMS

A picture book inspired by Enersen’s popular blog, which features artistic and whimsical photographs of her daughter, Mila.

The narrative begins, “These are Mila’s dreams.” Each page spread that follows features a photograph of a sleeping Mila with fabrics and household items arranged around her to create a scene intended to represent her dreams and an accompanying explanation. For example, a photograph of Mila in which she sleeps atop a fabric skyscraper and grasps a tiny car in her hand is accompanied by the following text: “When my baby dreams of being big… / she grows tall enough to take over the city.” In the next photo, sleeping Mila is placed on a black background filled with stars made of aluminum foil and a couple of colorful planets. A paper plate behind Mila’s head makes her look like an astronaut. In this dream, she is “gigantic enough to conquer the universe.” It is not surprising that Enersen’s quirky, creative photographs trough a large audience to her blog. The babies and preschoolers, however, for whom this book was presumably designed, will likely find much less appeal in this series of photos of one sleeping baby. The prose serves primarily to transition between photos and is also likely to appeal much more to parents than to their little ones.

Not the first book for adults to masquerade as a children’s book, but one of the more interesting. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-06-207175-0

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Nov. 20, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2011

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Fun but earnest, this rhyming romp reminds readers that one young person can make a difference.

SOFIA VALDEZ, FUTURE PREZ

From the Questioneers series

Sofia Valdez proves that community organizers of any age can have a positive impact.

After a trash-heap eyesore causes an injury to her beloved abuelo, Sofia springs into action to bring big change to her neighborhood. The simple rhymes of the text follow Sofia on her journey from problem through ideas to action as she garners community support for an idyllic new park to replace the dangerous junk pile. When bureaucracy threatens to quash Sofia’s nascent plan, she digs deep and reflects that “being brave means doing the thing you must do, / though your heart cracks with fear. / Though you’re just in Grade Two.” Sofia’s courage yields big results and inspires those around her to lend a hand. Implied Latinx, Sofia and her abuelo have medium brown skin, and Sofia has straight brown hair (Abuelo is bald). Readers will recognize Iggy Peck, Rosie Revere, and Ada Twist from Beaty’s previous installments in the Questioneers series making cameo appearances in several scenes. While the story connects back to the title and her aptitude for the presidency in only the second-to-last sentence of the book, Sofia’s leadership and grit are themes throughout. Roberts’ signature illustration style lends a sense of whimsy; detailed drawings will have readers scouring each page for interesting minutiae.

Fun but earnest, this rhyming romp reminds readers that one young person can make a difference. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-4197-3704-6

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Abrams

Review Posted Online: Nov. 24, 2019

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Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles.

THE DINKY DONKEY

Even more alliterative hanky-panky from the creators of The Wonky Donkey (2010).

Operating on the principle (valid, here) that anything worth doing is worth overdoing, Smith and Cowley give their wildly popular Wonky Donkey a daughter—who, being “cute and small,” was a “dinky donkey”; having “beautiful long eyelashes” she was in consequence a “blinky dinky donkey”; and so on…and on…and on until the cumulative chorus sails past silly and ludicrous to irresistibly hysterical: “She was a stinky funky plinky-plonky winky-tinky,” etc. The repeating “Hee Haw!” chorus hardly suggests what any audience’s escalating response will be. In the illustrations the daughter sports her parent’s big, shiny eyes and winsome grin while posing in a multicolored mohawk next to a rustic boombox (“She was a punky blinky”), painting her hooves pink, crossing her rear legs to signal a need to pee (“winky-tinky inky-pinky”), demonstrating her smelliness with the help of a histrionic hummingbird, and finally cozying up to her proud, evidently single parent (there’s no sign of another) for a closing cuddle.

Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-60083-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2019

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