Playful and inviting armchair travel for conscientious youngsters.

HELLO NEW YORK!

From the Hello, Big City! series

With shaped pages and a fold-out map, this is a guide to the landmarks of the Big Apple.

Many NYC tourist sights are illustrated, including the expected (the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, and Times Square) and the too-rarely depicted (Chinatown and Harlem’s Apollo Theater), often in paired double-page spreads, with the die-cut page on the recto becoming a different vantage point (or inside) of the tourist attraction on the verso. Cleverly, the rectangular windows of the facade of the main building of the New York Public Library become the spines of shelved books when the page is turned and readers enter. Cosneau’s flat, graphic images in muted, cool colors adeptly capture the busy energy of the city, presenting a diverse cast of people with stylized skin tones of warm gray, chalk white, mustard yellow, and salmon pink. Franceschelli peppers the art with a few brief lines that set the scene: “GRAND CENTRAL TERMINAL / People rushing. People running. // Where’s my train? Time to GO!” The first spread is a fold-out map that provides a key to the 10 featured landmarks, though it is not scaled for navigation. It is incorrectly labeled as a map of New York City (Staten Island and the Bronx are nowhere in sight, and Brooklyn and Queens are gray spaces on the margins). The companion title, Hello Paris!, takes young readers across the pond with a similar format and illuminates landmarks in the City of Lights, such as the Louvre, Montmartre, and Notre-Dame. With thinner-than-normal board pages sporting die-cuts, fold-out maps, and spines that could easily give way, both titles are best suited to readers already accustomed to books.

Playful and inviting armchair travel for conscientious youngsters. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: May 1, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-4197-2829-7

Page Count: 46

Publisher: abramsappleseed

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2018

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A cheery board book to reinforce the oneness of babykind.

BABIES AROUND THE WORLD

Ten babies in 10 countries greet friends in almost 10 languages.

Countries of origin are subtly identified. For example, on the first spread, NYC is emblazoned on a blond, white baby’s hat as well as a brown baby’s scoot-car taxi. On the next spread, “Mexico City” is written on a light brown toddler’s bike. A flag in each illustration provides another hint. However, the languages are not named, so on first reading, the fine but important differences between Spanish and Portuguese are easily missed. This is also a problem on pages showing transliterated Arabic from Cairo and Afrikaans from Cape Town. Similarly, Chinese and Japanese are transliterated, without use of traditional hànzì or kanji characters. British English is treated as a separate language, though it is, after all, still English. French (spoken by 67 million people) is included, but German, Russian, and Hindi (spoken by 101 million, 145 million, and 370 million respectively) are not. English translations are included in a slightly smaller font. This world survey comes full circle, ending in San Francisco with a beige baby sleeping in an equally beige parent’s arms. The message of diversity is reinforced by images of three babies—one light brown, one medium brown, one white—in windows on the final spread.

A cheery board book to reinforce the oneness of babykind. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: April 4, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-938093-87-6

Page Count: 20

Publisher: Duo Press

Review Posted Online: April 26, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2017

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More information than toddlers will sit still for; not enough for preschoolers who are outgrowing board books.

MY BODY

From the Hello World! series

An introduction to the body for the youngest readers.

It’s an endlessly fascinating topic, but here it is explained in wordy and needlessly exclamatory detail. On the opening spread three children play: One flies a kite, another plays hopscotch, and a third hangs upside down from a branch while the text explains that “your body can do so many things!” Basic facts about each body part are explained on subsequent spreads—more or less. A spread devoted to the belly button gives no hint to its original purpose. A busy park scene with all the characters and summary text that emphasizes the importance of “Lots of sleep, good food, and plenty of exercise” ends this compendium. McDonald’s attempts to be inclusive don’t quite succeed. A brown-skinned boy playing wheelchair basketball is used to explain arm joints, and there are several other children of color in the book. But on the page about hearing, the brown-skinned tot’s prominent ears and his placement in a tree make him look more like a monkey than a child—an unfortunate association. Many spreads include a question that relates to the topic but could also prove distracting. An additional fact on each spread set in a smaller font is clearly for older children or grown-ups, not toddlers.

More information than toddlers will sit still for; not enough for preschoolers who are outgrowing board books. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Feb. 13, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5247-6636-8

Page Count: 27

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: May 23, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2018

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