All in all, some good, clean reading fun.

READ REVIEW

GET OUT OF MY BATH!

Will Ellie be able to relax in the bath?

In the opening spread, Ellie the elephant sits in water that fills the bottom half of both pages. Taking a cue from Hervé Tullet’s Press Here (2011), Teckentrup’s text invites readers to “shake the book from side to side, then turn the page to see what happens...”; the page turn reveals Ellie swimming through waves. She’s accompanied only by a rubber duck, and subsequent page turns show the water tilting to the left and right in response to the text’s prompts. But when Crocodile appears and Ellie is distressed, the text directs the reader to tell it to “get out.” The story’s pattern is broken when Crocodile remains on the next spread, and Flamingo joins the bath. The ensuing plot structure is reminiscent of stories like Jan Brett’s The Mitten (1989), but instead of an ending in which the crowding itself results in the water overflowing or some such resolution, Ellie takes the water into her trunk. The now-chilly animals leave, and once she’s alone, Ellie lets the water out of her trunk. An unfortunate closing line prompts the implied child readers to take baths too, thus imposing a prescriptive spirit on the otherwise playful text and appealing digital illustrations of the animal characters.

All in all, some good, clean reading fun. (Picture book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Aug. 4, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-7636-8006-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Nosy Crow/Candlewick

Review Posted Online: May 12, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2015

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Beloved Little Blue takes a bit of the mystery—and fear—out of Halloween costumes.

LITTLE BLUE TRUCK'S HALLOWEEN

A lift-the-flap book gives the littlest trick-or-treaters some practice identifying partygoers under their costumes.

Little Blue Truck and his buddy Toad are off to a party, and they invite readers (and a black cat) along for the ride: “ ‘Beep! Beep! Beep!’ / says Little Blue. / ‘It’s Halloween!’ / You come, too.” As they drive, they are surprised (and joined) by many of their friends in costume. “Who’s that in a tutu / striking a pose / up on the tiniest / tips of her toes? / Under the mask / who do you see?” Lifting the flap unmasks a friend: “ ‘Quack!’ says the duck. / ‘It’s me! It’s me!’ ” The sheep is disguised as a clown, the cow’s a queen, the pig’s a witch, the hen and her chick are pirates, and the horse is a dragon. Not to be left out, Little Blue has a costume, too. The flaps are large and sturdy, and enough of the animals’ characteristic features are visible under and around the costumes that little ones will be able to make successful guesses even on the first reading. Lovely curvy shapes and autumn colors fade to dusky blues as night falls, and children are sure to notice the traditional elements of a Halloween party: apple bobbing, lit jack-o’-lanterns, and punch and treats.

Beloved Little Blue takes a bit of the mystery—and fear—out of Halloween costumes. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-544-77253-3

Page Count: 16

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: July 20, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2016

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This TV rerun in board-book form has nothing new to offer.

PEPPA'S GIANT PUMPKIN

From the Peppa Pig series

Peppa hopes to join her classmates in a Halloween pumpkin competition in this adaptation of a story from the popular British television program Peppa Pig.

With the help of Granny and Grandpa Pig, Peppa turns her giant pumpkin, which is the size of a compact car, into a jack-o’-lantern. The trio is flummoxed when it comes time to transport the pumpkin to the competition, so they call on Miss Rabbit and her helicopter to airlift the pumpkin to the festivities as Peppa and her grandparents ride inside. Peppa arrives just in time for the contest and wins the prize for best flying pumpkin. The scenes look as if they are pulled directly from the television show, right down to the rectangular framing of some of the scenes. While the story is literally nothing new, the text is serviceable, describing the action in two to three sentences per page. The pumpkin-shaped book and orange foil cover will likely attract youngsters, whether they are Peppa fans or not.

This TV rerun in board-book form has nothing new to offer. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 30, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-33922-2

Page Count: 10

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Sept. 24, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2019

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