From the Eric Carle and Friends' What's Your Favorite series , Vol. 3

A terrific prompt and conversation starter for young artists.

A lively collection of illustrations of crawling, creeping, and flying creatures offers a look at the versatility of several well-known children’s artists.

As with What’s Your Favorite Animal? (2014) and What’s Your Favorite Color? (2017), Carle here showcases the work of 15 friends whose responses to the title question offer a wonderful range of styles, media, and palettes together with brief stories, poems, and comments. Multicolored dots on the green endpapers suggest caterpillar eggs on a leafy background. Each of the varied selection of arthropods within is presented in a contained but generous two-page spread. The creature selection goes beyond the title’s “favorite bugs” to include millipedes and a couple of spider species. Facts about each are spare or absent, but this is an art book rather than an informational work. Selections vary, including Kenard Pak’s graceful fireflies, Brendan Wenzel’s bright peacock spiders, and Eric Fan’s droll bowler-hatted, briefcase-toting worker bee. Ekua Holmes’ portrait of herself as a brown-skinned young girl observing the busy ants in her ant farm joins Carle’s humanoid butterfly-child on the cover and Carle himself disguised as a large and bearded Very Hungry Caterpillar (both the latter are white). Brief biographies introduce the artists; media and techniques aren’t disclosed.

A terrific prompt and conversation starter for young artists. (Picture book. 2-9)

Pub Date: July 31, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-250-15175-9

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Godwin Books

Review Posted Online: April 24, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2018



From the I Like To Read series

Simple, encouraging text, charming photographs, straightforward, unpretentious diversity, and adorable animals—what’s not to...

This entry-level early reader/picture book pairs children with farm animals.

Using a simple, effective template—a full-page photograph on the recto page and a bordered spot photo above the text on the verso—Rotner delivers an amiable picture book that presents racially and ethnically diverse kids interacting (mostly in the cuddling department) with the adult and baby animals typically found on a farm. Chickens, chicks, cats, kittens, dogs, puppies, pigs, piglets, cows, and calves are all represented. While a couple of double-page spreads show the larger adult animals—pigs and cows—without a child, most of the rest portray a delighted child hugging a compliant critter. The text, simple and repetitive, changes only the name for the animal depicted in the photo on that spread: “I like the cat”; “I like the piglet.” In this way, reading comprehension for new readers is supported in an enjoyable, appealing way, since the photo of the animal reinforces the new word. It’s hard to go wrong combining cute kids with adorable animals, but special kudos must be given for the very natural way Rotner has included diversity—it’s especially gratifying to see diversity normalized and validated early, at the same time that reading comprehension is taught.

Simple, encouraging text, charming photographs, straightforward, unpretentious diversity, and adorable animals—what’s not to like? (Picture book/early reader. 2-6)

Pub Date: Aug. 15, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-8234-3833-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2017



A gleeful game for budding naturalists.

Artfully cropped animal portraits challenge viewers to guess which end they’re seeing.

In what will be a crowd-pleasing and inevitably raucous guessing game, a series of close-up stock photos invite children to call out one of the titular alternatives. A page turn reveals answers and basic facts about each creature backed up by more of the latter in a closing map and table. Some of the posers, like the tail of an okapi or the nose on a proboscis monkey, are easy enough to guess—but the moist nose on a star-nosed mole really does look like an anus, and the false “eyes” on the hind ends of a Cuyaba dwarf frog and a Promethea moth caterpillar will fool many. Better yet, Lavelle saves a kicker for the finale with a glimpse of a small parasitical pearlfish peeking out of a sea cucumber’s rear so that the answer is actually face and butt. “Animal identification can be tricky!” she concludes, noting that many of the features here function as defenses against attack: “In the animal world, sometimes your butt will save your face and your face just might save your butt!” (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A gleeful game for budding naturalists. (author’s note) (Informational picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: July 11, 2023

ISBN: 9781728271170

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Sourcebooks eXplore

Review Posted Online: May 9, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2023

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