A mostly (t)winning story to make readers cackle.

READ REVIEW

PEEPING BEAUTY

When will the last little chick hatch?

In a farmyard story laden with egg-cellent puns, anthropomorphic chickens Mama and Papa and their two big chicks (who are unmentioned in the text, appearing only in the illustrations) wait for their three new eggs to hatch. It’s very “egg-citing.” The first two eggs hatch quickly, but the third won’t budge. The babies each “hatch a plan” involving boisterous barnyard activities, but nothing works, “Maybe we just need to be patient,” suggests Mama, and then the family settles in to read while they wait. The chicks, and even Papa, start to drift off to sleep as Mama reads The Princess and the Peacock, Beauty and the Beak, and then the eponymous Peeping Beauty, but everyone awakens as they hear the chick in the egg start to peep during the last story. Inspired by the “peck on the cheek” the rooster gives to Peeping Beauty in the book, the family circles around the last egg to “give a little extra love.” This does the trick, and not one, but two little chicks hatch from the egg in a surprise ending. Waring’s bright, playful digital illustrations augment the text’s humor, but their addition of the two big chicks seems unnecessary and potentially confusing, since they closely resemble the first chicks to hatch, and with no names among the four of them, readers will be forgiven for not knowing exactly which chick is which.

A mostly (t)winning story to make readers cackle. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: May 15, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-4814-7272-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Aladdin

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2018

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Daddy-and-child dog lovers can try some of these canine ways of expressing affection.

DADDIES ARE AWESOME

Puppies celebrate the many ways their dads are awesome.

“Daddies are playful. / They swing you around. // You ride on their shoulders / or hang upside down.” The first spread pictures a scruffy pup, mouth clamped on its dad’s tail, hanging. The second features a long dachshund, his four pups using the large expanse of his back as a jungle gym or resting spot. The husky dad is labeled as daring, brave, and strong, while the hound takes his pup on adventures (digging and hiding under a bush). Other dog dads give kisses and tickles, tell bedtime stories and help count sheep (a stuffed toy), and help their pups grow (challenging them with stairs and carrying them when the going gets tough). Lovšin creatively interprets some of the text that applies well to kids but not so well to canines: dad and pup at each end of a long stick held in their mouths is the dog equivalent of holding hands. Though many dog breeds will be familiar, some are just mutts, though all are shown caring for and enjoying the company of their offspring. White backgrounds keep the focus on the dogs.

Daddy-and-child dog lovers can try some of these canine ways of expressing affection. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: May 17, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-62779-452-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: March 16, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2016

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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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