A brief introduction to five band instruments with accompanying sound.
The instruments highlighted here are the flute, accordion, saxophone, drum, and cello. Each double-page spread features, on the left, a few cartoon illustrations with simple sentences offering some facts about the instrument and its use. While some of the facts are fairly simple—“The drum is very noisy!”—others are more complicated or even obscure. Readers learn, for instance, that the “saxophone is the symbol of jazz” and that the “panpipe is the most common type of flute in South America.” On the right-hand side of each spread is a photograph of the instrument with an embedded sound button. The buttons are a bit tricky for little hands to depress, but the sounds they produce—several seconds of music for each instrument—are clear and interesting. The cartoons and stock photos are merely serviceable, but the combination of the two types of images will aid children in identifying the instruments in different contexts. Simultaneously published Forest Animals follows the same pattern and includes a wolf, bear, owl, frog, and deer (which grunts).
The strongest aspect of this otherwise mediocre offering is the quality of the sound, making it and its companion good options for board-book collections lacking multisensory titles. (Board book. 2-4)