Uncomfortable and unremarkable.

READ REVIEW

PARADE COLORS

From the First Celebrations series

Kids of many races celebrate nationalism at a Fourth of July parade.

This latest volume in the First Celebrations series invites children to identify eight basic colors and a few simple objects in a no-frills parade. The images are easily grasped but dull, with the same blue background on most pages. The occasion for the parade isn’t named, but the prevalence of red, white, and blue and an appearance by Uncle Sam suggest the Fourth of July. The top of the book is cut in a wavy pattern that complements the ripples of the flag on the cover, and two pages that focus on the red-and-white stripes of the flag exhort readers to “wave a flag back and forth.” The parade includes a fire engine, a marching band, floats, and a brown-skinned police officer on horseback. The multicultural cast also includes a black firefighter, a white marching-band drummer, and children of a variety of skin tones. This book can be seen as either determinedly aspirational or tone-deaf to the current moment. Against a backdrop of anti-immigrant sentiment and deportations, the celebratory air and unvaryingly smiling faces feel forced in their apparent enthusiasm.

Uncomfortable and unremarkable. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: May 2, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-58089-536-1

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Charlesbridge

Review Posted Online: April 17, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2017

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An excellent, rounded effort from a creator who knows how to deliver.

EEK! HALLOWEEN!

The farmyard's chickens experience Halloween.

A round, full moon shines in the sky, and the chickens of Boynton's barnyard are feeling “nervous.” Pumpkins shine “with flickering eyes,” witches and wizards wander the pastures, and one chicken has seen “a mouse of enormous size.” It’s Halloween night, and readers will delight as the chickens huddle together and try to figure out what's going on. All ends well, of course, and in Boynton's trademark silly style. (It’s really quite remarkable how her ranks of white, yellow-beaked chickens evoke rows of candy corn.) At this point parents and children know what they're in for when they pick up a book by the prolific author, and she doesn't disappoint here. The chickens are silly, the pigs are cute, and the coloring and illustrations evoke a warmth that little ones wary of Halloween will appreciate. For children leery of the ghouls and goblins lurking in the holiday's iconography, this is a perfect antidote, emphasizing all the fun Halloween has to offer.

An excellent, rounded effort from a creator who knows how to deliver. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 23, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-7611-9300-5

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Workman

Review Posted Online: Sept. 19, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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This brisk read is a solid accompaniment to Easter preparations.

THIS LITTLE BUNNY

Little bunnies prepare for the definitive bunny holiday.

Bunnies prepare for Easter in this board book. In verse set to the cadence of “This Little Piggy,” bunnies go to market, bake a cake, paint eggs, weave a basket, and do all sorts of other things to get ready for Easter. Rescek’s illustrations take full advantage of spring’s color palette, employing purples, pinks, oranges, and blues and incorporating striped and spotted ovals evoking Easter eggs. Little readers learning about the Easter Bunny for the first time will be delighted to get a peek at the process bunnies may go through to prepare for Easter and how it mirrors activities they perform with their parents.

This brisk read is a solid accompaniment to Easter preparations. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Jan. 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4998-0105-7

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Little Bee

Review Posted Online: April 13, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2016

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