A giraffe, a rhino, a rabbit, a monkey, an alligator and a caterpillar all come upon a peach that has fallen to the ground and have a discussion—and a competition—as to which of them should get the first bite.
While this Korean import is promoted as a math story illustrating the concepts of comparing, sorting and measuring, it is also an attractive picture book, with quite nifty illustrations that look like watercolor with fabric collage. It also displays a sly sense of humor in its uncredited translation. Giraffe, of course, thinks the first bite should go to the tallest one, while Gator thinks it should go to the one with the biggest mouth, and Monkey thinks it should be the animal with the longest tail. The key to the winner, however, lies in the endpapers, which feature the animal that is always first no matter which way the measuring goes. The characters mostly sit or stand up like human children, and some even wear bits of clothing. Short exercises and lessons further explaining the concepts end the book. The peach, which appears on many of the pages, is a luscious pink-and-gold masterpiece that definitely looks good enough to eat.
Wry text and witty illustrations make for one enjoyable math lesson. (Picture book. 4-7)