It’s a goofy romp with a very lovable dinosaur at its center that never loses its (very small) footing.

NEVER FOLLOW A DINOSAUR

If a set of small tracks leads to a bowl of missing cat food, it must be a dinosaur, right? One with very tiny feet?

When the strange footprints lead Joe and Sally through their house and outside, the white sibs decide, based on the clues they find, that it's not only a dinosaur that left them, but one that loves music, bumped its head, loves to swim, and much more. When they get home, their preoccupied parents suggest it's not a good idea to follow a dinosaur, especially since they're extinct. Ignoring that, they set to making a dinosaur trap, and in a welcome twist, they actually meet the same creature they were imagining, one in need of help baking treats. Latimer gives his silly dinosaur some very funny expressions as it goes through imagination-bubble indignities, and the kids’ diagram of their dinosaur trap is equally chuckleworthy. Backgrounds are kept to a minimum to keep the focus on Sally and Joe’s adventure tracking down their cat-food thief. Latimer escalates the absurdity with great pacing and repetition in the text ("What if it's a hungry, heavy, swimming, dancing dinosaur with a headache, a sore foot and wings!") coupled with increasingly busy and funny illustrations.

It’s a goofy romp with a very lovable dinosaur at its center that never loses its (very small) footing. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-56145-704-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Peachtree

Review Posted Online: June 28, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2016

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Sugary uplift, shrink-wrapped for the masses.

HOW TO CATCH A LOVEOSAURUS

From the How To Catch… series

An elusive new quarry leads the How To Catch… kids on a merry chase through a natural history museum.

Taking at least a step away from the “hunters versus prey” vibe of previous entries in the popular series, the racially diverse group of young visitors dashes through various museum halls in pursuit of the eponymous dino—whose quest to “spread kindness and joy ’round the world” takes the form of a mildly tumultuous museum tour. In most of Elkerton’s overly sweet, color-saturated scenes, only portions of the Loveosaurus, who is purple and covered with pink hearts, are visible behind exhibits or lumbering off the page. But the children find small enticements left behind, from craft supplies to make cards for endangered species to pictures of smiley faces, candy heart–style personal notes (“You Rock!” “Give Hugs”), and, in the hall of medieval arms and armor, a sign urging them to “Be Honest Be Kind.” The somewhat heavy-handed lesson comes through loud and clear. “There’s a message, he wants us to think,” hints Walstead to clue in more obtuse readers…and concluding scenes of smiling people young and otherwise exchanging hugs and knuckle bumps, holding doors for a wheelchair rider, and dancing through clouds of sparkles indicate that they, at least, have gotten it. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Sugary uplift, shrink-wrapped for the masses. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: Dec. 6, 2022

ISBN: 9781728268781

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Sourcebooks Wonderland

Review Posted Online: Jan. 18, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2023

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This warm family story is a splendid showcase for the combined talents of Medina, a Pura Belpré award winner, and Dominguez,...

MANGO, ABUELA, AND ME

Abuela is coming to stay with Mia and her parents. But how will they communicate if Mia speaks little Spanish and Abuela, little English? Could it be that a parrot named Mango is the solution?

The measured, evocative text describes how Mia’s español is not good enough to tell Abuela the things a grandmother should know. And Abuela’s English is too poquito to tell Mia all the stories a granddaughter wants to hear. Mia sets out to teach her Abuela English. A red feather Abuela has brought with her to remind her of a wild parrot that roosted in her mango trees back home gives Mia an idea. She and her mother buy a parrot they name Mango. And as Abuela and Mia teach Mango, and each other, to speak both Spanish and English, their “mouths [fill] with things to say.” The accompanying illustrations are charmingly executed in ink, gouache, and marker, “with a sprinkling of digital magic.” They depict a cheery urban neighborhood and a comfortable, small apartment. Readers from multigenerational immigrant families will recognize the all-too-familiar language barrier. They will also cheer for the warm and loving relationship between Abuela and Mia, which is evident in both text and illustrations even as the characters struggle to understand each other. A Spanish-language edition, Mango, Abuela, y yo, gracefully translated by Teresa Mlawer, publishes simultaneously.

This warm family story is a splendid showcase for the combined talents of Medina, a Pura Belpré award winner, and Dominguez, an honoree. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Aug. 25, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-7636-6900-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: April 15, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2015

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