Another playful imagination-stretcher from the author of Look! and Tickle Monster (both 2015). (Picture book. 6-8)



A ravening wolf, several potential victims, a wild chase, an ambush, and a spectacular reversal of fortune make for an exciting tale—even when all the characters stay home due to bad weather.

At once metafictive and interactive, the plotline is presented as a recurring story that runs its preordained course whenever its “keeper,” Mr. Warbler, steps out of his cottage to set the Big Bad Wolf to chasing a “delectable” pig, a clever hare, and a flying squirrel with a hot air balloon into the house of a former circus bear. This last blasts the predator out through a giant trumpet and so sends him away limping and muttering. That’s how the story goes on sunny days, at least. But today it happens to be raining—so though the narrative provides a blow-by-blow account of narrow escapes and lickety-split action, none of the cast, from keeper on, ever actually appears in Manceau’s deserted scenes of blocky, buttoned-up houses and geometrically tidy woodlands. No matter: with or without drawing materials, young readers will have little trouble conjuring up suitably colorful figures and dramatic tableaux of their own to superimpose on the backdrops. When, finally, the sun comes out, the narrator’s closing assurance that the story can now “start for real…” ends the exercise on a droll note.

Another playful imagination-stretcher from the author of Look! and Tickle Monster (both 2015). (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: Aug. 11, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-77147-151-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Owlkids Books

Review Posted Online: June 16, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2015

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            There are many parallel legends – the seal women, for example, with their strange sad longings – but none is more direct than this American Indian story of a girl who is carried away in a horses’ stampede…to ride thenceforth by the side of a beautiful stallion who leads the wild horses.  The girl had always loved horses, and seemed to understand them “in a special way”; a year after her disappearance her people find her riding beside the stallion, calf in tow, and take her home despite his strong resistance.  But she is unhappy and returns to the stallion; after that, a beautiful mare is seen riding always beside him.  Goble tells the story soberly, allowing it to settle, to find its own level.  The illustrations are in the familiar striking Goble style, but softened out here and there with masses of flowers and foliage – suitable perhaps for the switch in subject matter from war to love, but we miss the spanking clean design of Custer’s Last Battle and The Fetterman Fight.          6-7

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 1978

ISBN: 0689845049

Page Count: -

Publisher: Bradbury

Review Posted Online: April 26, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1978

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Too thin to fly as either tour or tribute but a memorable showcase nonetheless for a talented French paper artist.


From the Up, Up and Away series

Silhouettes, both printed and laser-cut, add sparkle to a quick tour of London sites and starry skies conducted by Mary Poppins.

Michael and Jane are thrilled when their nanny (literally) drops in on the end of a kite string, and spit-spot they’re off to see Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, and Piccadilly—followed by an undersea visit and a flight through comet-filled skies to a circus of constellations. As the text, translated without credit from the original French, is confined to a few wooden couplets along the lines of “On Cherry Tree Lane, it’s a nice day to dream… / To walk in the park or to eat an ice cream,” the stars of the show are Druvert’s illustrations. The black, cut pages are designed to be flipped back and forth to fill in printed cityscapes, marine scenes, and speckled firmaments with fine detail. The marvelous intricacy of the cutout fences, ironwork, trees, strands of seaweed, and small human figures leaves those pages too fragile to survive even moderately careless handling intact, but the intensely black overlay (along with a subtle use of gray tones in the backgrounds) creates a sense of depth and, often, an evocative shimmer of light. A large die-cut window in the front cover offers a hint of the visual pleasures within.

Too thin to fly as either tour or tribute but a memorable showcase nonetheless for a talented French paper artist. (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 31, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-500-65104-9

Page Count: 36

Publisher: Thames & Hudson

Review Posted Online: Nov. 16, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2016

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