Seymour's home is one readers will want to visit again, but they can be thankful for now that reading this app doesn't...

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DON'T OPEN BEFORE CHRISTMAS

Christmas gifts opened too early come to life and make mayhem in this quirky, lecture-free lesson on the virtue of patience.

Bespectacled Seymour can't wait to get his presents—he’s hoping for a Pro Pigskin 5000 football, like the one he saw on TV. By Christmas Eve, he can't resist taking an early peek at the computer, skates and the football he's expecting. But when he opens the loot, making the gifts “hatch” too early, the presents start tearing the house apart. Can Seymour and his spunky pup get everything rewrapped? Told with a combination of touch-activated animation, inventive, pull-tab–like controls and lots of amusing background detail, it's that rare holiday tale that feels both completely wholesome and a bit anarchic. When things go crazy, the perspectives go wild, and the gifts don't just go bad; they turn into scary little mutants. The Pigskin becomes a toothy boar with menace on its mind, for instance. Of course, Seymour manages to tame the chaos in an ingenious way and learns that "sometimes waiting is the only way… / …to get what you want." The app could use a way to skip to specific pages, but its clever and spunky personality more than make up for that.

Seymour's home is one readers will want to visit again, but they can be thankful for now that reading this app doesn't require waiting until December 25th. (iPad storybook app. 3-8)

Pub Date: Oct. 4, 2012

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Crab Hill Press, LLC

Review Posted Online: Nov. 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2012

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ROOM ON THE BROOM

Each time the witch loses something in the windy weather, she and her cat are introduced to a new friend who loves flying on her broom. The fluid rhyming and smooth rhythm work together with one repetitive plot element focusing young attention spans until the plot quickens. (“Is there room on the broom for a blank such as me?”) When the witch’s broom breaks, she is thrown in to danger and the plot flies to the finish. Her friends—cat, dog, frog, and bird—are not likely to scare the dragon who plans on eating the witch, but together they form a formidable, gooey, scary-sounding monster. The use of full-page or even page-and-a-half spreads for many of the illustrations will ensure its successful use in story times as well as individual readings. The wart-nosed witch and her passengers make magic that is sure to please. Effective use of brilliant colors set against well-conceived backgrounds detail the story without need for text—but with it, the story—and the broom—take off. (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-8037-2557-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2001

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Perfect for those looking for a scary Halloween tale that won’t leave them with more fears than they started with. Pair with...

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CREEPY PAIR OF UNDERWEAR!

Reynolds and Brown have crafted a Halloween tale that balances a really spooky premise with the hilarity that accompanies any mention of underwear.

Jasper Rabbit needs new underwear. Plain White satisfies him until he spies them: “Creepy underwear! So creepy! So comfy! They were glorious.” The underwear of his dreams is a pair of radioactive-green briefs with a Frankenstein face on the front, the green color standing out all the more due to Brown’s choice to do the entire book in grayscale save for the underwear’s glowing green…and glow they do, as Jasper soon discovers. Despite his “I’m a big rabbit” assertion, that glow creeps him out, so he stuffs them in the hamper and dons Plain White. In the morning, though, he’s wearing green! He goes to increasing lengths to get rid of the glowing menace, but they don’t stay gone. It’s only when Jasper finally admits to himself that maybe he’s not such a big rabbit after all that he thinks of a clever solution to his fear of the dark. Brown’s illustrations keep the backgrounds and details simple so readers focus on Jasper’s every emotion, writ large on his expressive face. And careful observers will note that the underwear’s expression also changes, adding a bit more creep to the tale.

Perfect for those looking for a scary Halloween tale that won’t leave them with more fears than they started with. Pair with Dr. Seuss’ tale of animate, empty pants. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Aug. 22, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-4424-0298-0

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: July 15, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2017

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