Mildly amusing, but something of a one-trick pony.


In this tech-savvy parody of the contemporary classic If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, a hyperactive pet mouse named Applesauce goes off the deep end (literally) while mesmerized with his boy’s iPhone.

Like many a harried caregiver, the boy—who’s finalizing preparations for a special outing to the “wild animal amusement park” with Applesauce—gives the persistently pesky mouse his iPhone as a diversion. Big mistake! Applesauce’s glassy-eyed absorption with the device results in utter mayhem. Oblivious to the roller coaster, tempting junk food and exotic animals at the amusement park, the tap-tap-tapping mouse inadvertently frees the animals from their cages and walks off a cliff. Hitching a ride with some conveniently passing porpoises, he winds up on a “distant island.” The boy arrives to rescue Applesauce, and the pair camp overnight. With no outlets or charger for the dead phone, Applesauce undergoes brief but dramatic withdrawal symptoms, which end with a marshmallow roast. “Ann Droyd”—aka David Milgrim—adopts the original text’s conditional, “if / then” formula but doesn’t attempt its exquisitely circular structure. Cartoony illustrations employ flat blues, grays and greens contoured in black, with word bubbles for dialogue. As Applesauce and his boy stargaze, the mouse asks, “By the way, how’d we get here?”

Mildly amusing, but something of a one-trick pony. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Oct. 21, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-399-16926-7

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Blue Rider Press

Review Posted Online: July 29, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2014

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            There are many parallel legends – the seal women, for example, with their strange sad longings – but none is more direct than this American Indian story of a girl who is carried away in a horses’ stampede…to ride thenceforth by the side of a beautiful stallion who leads the wild horses.  The girl had always loved horses, and seemed to understand them “in a special way”; a year after her disappearance her people find her riding beside the stallion, calf in tow, and take her home despite his strong resistance.  But she is unhappy and returns to the stallion; after that, a beautiful mare is seen riding always beside him.  Goble tells the story soberly, allowing it to settle, to find its own level.  The illustrations are in the familiar striking Goble style, but softened out here and there with masses of flowers and foliage – suitable perhaps for the switch in subject matter from war to love, but we miss the spanking clean design of Custer’s Last Battle and The Fetterman Fight.          6-7

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 1978

ISBN: 0689845049

Page Count: -

Publisher: Bradbury

Review Posted Online: April 26, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1978

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A culturally intricate slice of a lupine courier’s life.


From the ¡Vamos! series

Little Lobo and his dog, Bernabé, journey through a Mexican mercado delivering diverse goods to a variety of booths.

With the aid of red words splattered throughout the spreads as labels, Raúl the Third gives an introduction to Spanish vocabulary as Little Lobo, an anthropomorphic wolf, leaves his house, fills his cart with objects from his warehouse, and delivers them to the market’s vendors. The journey also serves as a crash course in Mexican culture, as the images are packed with intertextual details such as food, traditional games, and characters, including Cantinflas, Frida Khalo, and Juan Gabriel. Readers acquainted with Raúl the Third’s characters from his Lowriders series with author Cathy Camper will appreciate cameos from familiar characters. As he makes his rounds, Little Lobo also collects different artifacts that people offer in exchange for his deliveries of shoe polish, clothespins, wood, tissue paper, paintbrushes, and a pair of golden laces. Although Raúl the Third departs from the ball-pen illustrations that he is known for, his depiction of creatures and critters peppering the borderland where his stories are set remains in his trademark style. The softer hues in the illustrations (chosen by colorist Bay) keep the busy compositions friendly, and the halftone patterns filling the illustrations create foregrounds and backgrounds reminiscent of Roy Lichtenstein’s pointillism.

A culturally intricate slice of a lupine courier’s life. (glossary) (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: April 2, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-328-55726-1

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Versify/HMH

Review Posted Online: Jan. 15, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2019

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