This is no helicopter mom, and things turn out just fine. Sure to connect with children in many ways—the adventure of...

READ REVIEW

BECAUSE YOUR MOMMY LOVES YOU

Clements and Alley reunite to produce a strong companion title to Because Your Daddy Loves You (2005).

Mommy and her son are off to camp at White Mountain National Forest, but first they need supplies. When the boy gets lost in the store, he calls out to his mother. His “mommy could say, / It’s all right, I’m coming to find you! / But she doesn’t. // She calls your name, / and you follow the sound of her voice. // When you find her, you get a big hug— / after you promise not to wander off again.” And so the challenging situations continue as they climb the steep mountain with heavy backpacks, cross a somewhat scary log bridge, put up their tent and roast marshmallows instead of burn them. Along the way mom could step in and take over or make things easier for her son, “But she doesn’t.” With great patience, gentle encouragement and firm direction, she guides her son through these various life lessons to foster self-confidence and independence. The ink, watercolor and acrylic illustrations deftly capture the boy’s apprehensions and resultant pride at his accomplishments.

This is no helicopter mom, and things turn out just fine. Sure to connect with children in many ways—the adventure of camping, learning how to do things all by oneself and conquering initial anxieties. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: April 3, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-547-25522-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Clarion

Review Posted Online: March 18, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2012

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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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THIS BOOK IS GRAY

A gray character tries to write an all-gray book.

The six primary and secondary colors are building a rainbow, each contributing the hue of their own body, and Gray feels forlorn and left out because rainbows contain no gray. So Gray—who, like the other characters, has a solid, triangular body, a doodle-style face, and stick limbs—sets off alone to create “the GRAYest book ever.” His book inside a book shows a peaceful gray cliff house near a gray sea with gentle whitecaps; his three gray characters—hippo, wolf, kitten—wait for their arc to begin. But then the primaries arrive and call the gray scene “dismal, bleak, and gloomy.” The secondaries show up too, and soon everyone’s overrunning Gray’s creation. When Gray refuses to let White and Black participate, astute readers will note the flaw: White and black (the colors) had already been included in the early all-gray spreads. Ironically, Gray’s book within a book displays calm, passable art while the metabook’s unsubtle illustrations and sloppy design make for cramped and crowded pages that are too busy to hold visual focus. The speech-bubble dialogue’s snappy enough (Blue calls people “dude,” and there are puns). A convoluted moral muddles the core artistic question—whether a whole book can be gray—and instead highlights a trite message about working together.

Low grade. (glossary) (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5420-4340-3

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Two Lions

Review Posted Online: July 23, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2019

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