A brimming bagful of holiday cheer.

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WUBBZY'S THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS

Santa comes to Wuzzleburg in this full-featured, deliciously silly adaptation of the classic poem.

“Wubbzy couldn’t believe what was next to appear, ‘WOW! WOW! It’s a sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer!’ ” Recast into preschooler-friendly rhymed prose, the text appears beneath brightly colored, simply drawn cartoon illustrations. These feature the cast of the Nick, Jr. TV show, a jolly bearded gent who “Ho-Ho-Hos” whenever poked and a set of bendy-antlered reindeer trailing a leader with a huge flashing red nose. Not only can every word be touched for a vocalization, but the figures, furnishings and piles of wrapped gifts in each scene respond briskly to taps, often in multiple ways. Better yet, all of the interactive distractions, along with the vivacious audio, can also be switched off with the “Just a Storybook” option. Moreover, side activities include a drag-and-drop “Snowman Dress-Up” and two other games, plus three coloring pages, three short but lively sing-along videos and a “Grown-Up’s Corner” with discussion questions.

A brimming bagful of holiday cheer. (iPad holiday app. 4-7)

Pub Date: Nov. 30, 2012

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Cupcake Digital

Review Posted Online: Dec. 20, 2012

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THE WONKY DONKEY

The print version of a knee-slapping cumulative ditty.

In the song, Smith meets a donkey on the road. It is three-legged, and so a “wonky donkey” that, on further examination, has but one eye and so is a “winky wonky donkey” with a taste for country music and therefore a “honky-tonky winky wonky donkey,” and so on to a final characterization as a “spunky hanky-panky cranky stinky-dinky lanky honky-tonky winky wonky donkey.” A free musical recording (of this version, anyway—the author’s website hints at an adults-only version of the song) is available from the publisher and elsewhere online. Even though the book has no included soundtrack, the sly, high-spirited, eye patch–sporting donkey that grins, winks, farts, and clumps its way through the song on a prosthetic metal hoof in Cowley’s informal watercolors supplies comical visual flourishes for the silly wordplay. Look for ready guffaws from young audiences, whether read or sung, though those attuned to disability stereotypes may find themselves wincing instead or as well.

Hee haw. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: May 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-545-26124-1

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Dec. 29, 2018

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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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