Youngsters who are constantly told to hush will love how a little character’s big voice makes all the difference.


A small cat and a little girl stop a crime in this illustrated tale.

Mouse, a tiny gray feline with huge ears and a big voice, never seems to meow when her family can appreciate it. Instead, she does so during television shows and breakfast time, and when everyone wants to sleep. But Little Liz understands what it’s like when others don’t listen; instead of telling Mouse to “hush,” like everyone else, Liz listens, and Mouse listens to her. One day, when Mouse hears an unusual noise in the kitchen, she tries to get her people’s attention. Only Liz responds, and they discover burglars. Mouse saves the day with a house-shaking meow, keeping the crisis in Benishek’s (The Squeezor Is Coming!, 2018, etc.) story from becoming too scary. (The cat-burglar team also includes actual cats, which heightens the silliness.) Mouse’s perpetual cheer, even in the face of being told to hush, comes through in Young’s (Angel on Assignment, 2018, etc.) color illustrations, which show Liz to be an irrepressible youngster with dark skin and curly brown hair. The parallels between Mouse (who “hadn’t grown into her ears yet”) and Little Liz (who “hadn’t grown into her eyes yet”) are also cleverly expressed.

Youngsters who are constantly told to hush will love how a little character’s big voice makes all the difference.

Pub Date: June 11, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-387-83056-5

Page Count: 24

Publisher: MacLaren-Cochrane Publishing

Review Posted Online: May 25, 2019

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Playful, engaging, and full of opportunities for empathy—a raucous storytime hit.


From the Who's in Your Book? series

Readers try to dislodge a monster from the pages of this emotive and interactive read-aloud.

“OH NO!” the story starts. “There’s a monster in your book!” The blue, round-headed monster with pink horns and a pink-tipped tail can be seen cheerfully munching on the opening page. “Let’s try to get him out,” declares the narrator. Readers are encouraged to shake, tilt, and spin the book around, while the monster careens around an empty background looking scared and lost. Viewers are exhorted to tickle the monster’s feet, blow on the page, and make a really loud noise. Finally, shockingly, it works: “Now he’s in your room!” But clearly a monster in your book is safer than a monster in your room, so he’s coaxed back into the illustrations and lulled to sleep, curled up under one page and cuddling a bit of another like a child with their blankie. The monster’s entirely cute appearance and clear emotional reactions to his treatment add to the interactive aspect, and some young readers might even resist the instructions to avoid hurting their new pal. Children will be brought along on the monster’s journey, going from excited, noisy, and wiggly to calm and steady (one can hope).

Playful, engaging, and full of opportunities for empathy—a raucous storytime hit. (Picture book. 2-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 5, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5247-6456-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: June 5, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2017

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A rollicking tale of rivalry.


Sweet Street had just one baker, Monsieur Oliphant, until two new confectionists move in, bringing a sugar rush of competition and customers.

First comes “Cookie Concocter par excellence” Mademoiselle Fee and then a pie maker, who opens “the divine Patisserie Clotilde!” With each new arrival to Sweet Street, rivalries mount and lines of hungry treat lovers lengthen. Children will delight in thinking about an abundance of gingerbread cookies, teetering, towering cakes, and blackbird pies. Wonderfully eccentric line-and-watercolor illustrations (with whites and marbled pastels like frosting) appeal too. Fine linework lends specificity to an off-kilter world in which buildings tilt at wacky angles and odd-looking (exclusively pale) people walk about, their pantaloons, ruffles, long torsos, and twiglike arms, legs, and fingers distinguishing them as wonderfully idiosyncratic. Rotund Monsieur Oliphant’s periwinkle complexion, flapping ears, and elongated nose make him look remarkably like an elephant while the women confectionists appear clownlike, with exaggerated lips, extravagantly lashed eyes, and voluminous clothes. French idioms surface intermittently, adding a certain je ne sais quoi. Embedded rhymes contribute to a bouncing, playful narrative too: “He layered them and cherried them and married people on them.” Tension builds as the cul de sac grows more congested with sweet-makers, competition, frustration, and customers. When the inevitable, fantastically messy food fight occurs, an observant child finds a sweet solution amid the delicious detritus.

A rollicking tale of rivalry. (Picture book. 4-8 )

Pub Date: July 7, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-101-91885-2

Page Count: 44

Publisher: Tundra Books

Review Posted Online: April 8, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2020

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