An enabling alternative to or companion for Stuart Murphy’s Double the Ducks, illustrated by Valeria Petrone (2003), in the...

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ALBERT DOUBLES THE FUN

From the Mouse Math series

This new entry in the Mouse Math series sends Albert to the fair, where there are plenty of opportunities to double up.

His friend Leo out when Albert comes calling, the little mouse heads to the fair with big sister Wanda and buys two maps (one for Leo), rides the Ferris wheel four times—twice for himself and then twice more for Leo—wins the pie-eating contest by chowing down on three slices and then three more, and plays the ring toss until he wins the eight tokens needed for two packages of five Robo-Rat action figures. At each stop the arithmetical doubling is depicted below the simple cartoon illustrations both with number sentences and iconic images of such items as tickets or pie slices. Suggestions for discussion topics and enrichment activities at the end are addressed to educators, but young readers should have no trouble themselves re-creating the paper-towel–tube ring toss that Albert and Leo set up after discovering that they had both been to the fair and now have an oversupply of Robo-Rats. Simultaneously publishing are Albert Helps Out (using coins) and Where’s Albert? (skip counting), both also by May, and Bravo, Albert! (patterns), by Lori Haskins Houran.

An enabling alternative to or companion for Stuart Murphy’s Double the Ducks, illustrated by Valeria Petrone (2003), in the venerable MathStart series. (Informational picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: April 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-57565-835-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Kane Press

Review Posted Online: Feb. 1, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

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Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles.

THE DINKY DONKEY

Even more alliterative hanky-panky from the creators of The Wonky Donkey (2010).

Operating on the principle (valid, here) that anything worth doing is worth overdoing, Smith and Cowley give their wildly popular Wonky Donkey a daughter—who, being “cute and small,” was a “dinky donkey”; having “beautiful long eyelashes” she was in consequence a “blinky dinky donkey”; and so on…and on…and on until the cumulative chorus sails past silly and ludicrous to irresistibly hysterical: “She was a stinky funky plinky-plonky winky-tinky,” etc. The repeating “Hee Haw!” chorus hardly suggests what any audience’s escalating response will be. In the illustrations the daughter sports her parent’s big, shiny eyes and winsome grin while posing in a multicolored mohawk next to a rustic boombox (“She was a punky blinky”), painting her hooves pink, crossing her rear legs to signal a need to pee (“winky-tinky inky-pinky”), demonstrating her smelliness with the help of a histrionic hummingbird, and finally cozying up to her proud, evidently single parent (there’s no sign of another) for a closing cuddle.

Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-60083-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2019

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Take strength from the dreamers before you and follow your dreams. Or maybe just roll the dice.

LITTLE JOE CHICKAPIG

Is it a book about aspirations or the backstory for the board game?

Chickapig is defined as “an animal hybrid that is half-chicken and half-pig” and is depicted in yellow, two-legged chick shape with pink pig snout and ears. Young Joe Chickapig lives on a farm that was his grandfather’s dream, but it’s getting Joe down. He dreams of adventure but needs the “courage to follow his heart. / But how could he do it? How could he start?” In a bedtime story, Joe’s mother shares the influential characters that helped Joe’s sailor grandfather “follow his heart against the tide.” It seems that “Grandpa had heard a story told / Of a great big bear who broke the mold. / The bear was tired of striking fear”—so he became a forest doctor and a friend to all. And the bear’s inspiration? “A mouse who went to space.” The mouse, in turn, found hope in a “fierce young dragon” who joined a rock band. And coming full circle, the dragon found courage from a Chickapig warrior who “tired of shields and swords to wield” and established a farm. Chickapig game fans will appreciate this fanciful rhyming tale illustrated in attention-grabbing colors, but readers coming to it cold will note a distinct absence of plot. Mouse and dragon present female; all others are male.

Take strength from the dreamers before you and follow your dreams. Or maybe just roll the dice. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Jan. 14, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-7944-4452-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Printers Row

Review Posted Online: Oct. 9, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2019

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