The vibrant insects and flowers do not need any help from the gimmick to bring together a colorful spring board book.

HOORAY FOR SPRING!

From the Color Wonder series

Six cheerful insects in six corresponding colors celebrate spring in this board book with a color wheel.

An upbeat, four-line rhyme introduces each insect and color as bright flowers of the corresponding color fill each double-page spread. “Wake up, LADYBUG, / Look what’s here. / Spring brings RED— / march and cheer.” A variety of insects (an orange caterpillar, a yellow bumblebee, a green grasshopper, etc.) in cute cartoony illustrations with vivid colors are introduced, one at a time, in each double spread. Toddlers will enjoy the repetition: all the insects from the previous pages are included in every new page, and the rhyme repeats “Spring brings” with each color and has an action component (wiggle, prance, hop, cheer). The word spelling the color on each page is bolded in uppercase letters and written in the corresponding color, strengthening the connection. The two scalloped wheels of different sizes on the last page may be rotated with some difficulty by a toddler. They control the changing colors within a die-cut circle at the center of a large flower on each right-hand page, but they do not emulate the sequencing on a traditional color wheel. The wheels seem advanced for babies, and even for toddlers, the device may not add much value to the book.

The vibrant insects and flowers do not need any help from the gimmick to bring together a colorful spring board book. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Dec. 27, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4814-8720-7

Page Count: 14

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Dec. 14, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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While the ghoulies here are more cute than scary, “jump,” “quiver,” and “run” will probably get across the idea to even the...

HALLOWEEN ABC

An abecedary of spooky or autumnal delights for the littlest readers.

Each letter of the alphabet is highlighted on a single page, the upper- and lowercase letters appearing in the upper left-hand corner, while the object is named at the bottom or in the upper right. Ho keeps her illustrations simple and places them against plain, brightly colored backgrounds, keeping them accessible to those still learning about Halloween’s many icons. The almost-fluorescent orange cover is sure to attract attention, and the palette of black, purple, orange, yellow, and radioactive green enhances the Halloween mood. But while many of the chosen items will be expected—bats, ghost, haunted house, owl, skeleton, vampire, witch, zombie—others are rather odd choices. J is for “jump,” not jack-o’-lantern (“pumpkin” is illustrated with a jack-o’-lantern); K is for a mostly black “kitten” standing in a coffin; and N is for “nightmare,” which is virtually impossible to express visually for this age group without provoking said nightmare. Here, a lavender-skinned child (zombie?) in pajamas and nightcap has arms raised and mouth open wide in surprise—perhaps in response to the mummy across the gutter? The tough letters use “quiver,” spider-decorated “underpants” on a monster, and “extra treats,” the x underlined.

While the ghoulies here are more cute than scary, “jump,” “quiver,” and “run” will probably get across the idea to even the youngest listeners that Halloween can be scary. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 18, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-7636-9527-9

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Nosy Crow/Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Aug. 7, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2018

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It’s all very obvious, but there’s no harm in harping on kindness.

ABCS OF KINDNESS

A HIGHLIGHTS BOOK ABOUT KINDNESS

An alphabet book featuring different ways to be kind.

This oversized board book takes a walk through the alphabet and hits on most of the obvious ways in which children can be kind to one another, themselves, and the planet. Berger’s simple text includes both small acts, like “Brightening someone’s day with a smile,” and larger ones, such as “Standing up for someone when no one else will.” The text is direct, without any poetry or flourish, so it reads a bit like an encyclopedia. The acts of kindness feel attainable for young readers, and Trukhan’s illustrations offer practical examples: One child gives up their spot in line for the slide; another makes room at the lunch table. Trukhan’s illustrations are reminiscent of Byron Barton’s, featuring bold, block colors and geometric foundations. The book is inclusive of people with many different skin and hair colors, and it also depicts one child with a cochlear implant and another who walks with forearm crutches. Trukhan’s companion title, Kindess Counts 123, with text by R.A. Strong, echoes both this title’s theme and its inclusivity. While none of the content in either book is particularly revelatory, it is still meaningful and nicely presented.

It’s all very obvious, but there’s no harm in harping on kindness. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Feb. 4, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-68437-651-3

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Highlights Press

Review Posted Online: Jan. 21, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2020

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