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A Counting Book

by David Elliott & illustrated by Ethan Long

Age Range: 2 - 4

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-8234-1983-8
Publisher: Holiday House

This counting book shows different chickens doing diverse dances until they reach the number ten. Things come to a halt, however, when the author addresses the reader by pointing out that one chicken is not cooperating: the reader. Encouraged to make music with a comb kazoo, the author suggests the reader start dancing the night away. Though the dances shown are varied and fun, they may not all be familiar to children. Long’s pictures are surprisingly washed-out-looking even though he uses a wide palette of colors. However, the backgrounds are painted in such drab colors that the more vibrantly colored pictures of the chickens dancing are somehow lost on the page. The author’s rhymes will probably succeed better as a read-aloud, allowing for an active story time. Not one of the more necessary counting books available, it’s a bit of a disappointment. (Picture book. 2-4)