Mail Duck delivers delight, and toddlers will clamor for more.



From a mail truck, a friendly, overalls-wearing white duck delivers variously shaped parcels—triangle, circle, square, oval, rectangle, and heart—to a corresponding critter who happens to be a lover of said geometric figure.

Each shape-and-animal pairing is allotted a double-page spread on which Mail Duck delivers the package to a grateful recipient. Pink owl Omar, for example, lives in a hollow tree trunk with an oval opening, and readers can peek behind flaps to view all the ovals in the owl’s house. Mail Duck hands over an oval-shaped package to the owl that readers can view the contents of behind a flap, which reveals it to be an oval-shaped balloon. This pattern is repeated with Scout the beaver, Cecil the snail, Trudy the mouse, Rosie the snake, and Harry the cat. The simple text declares the preferred shape of each animal, and Mail Duck ponders what could be inside each package via thought bubble. The final spread features gatefold flaps that open up the post-office exterior to reveal those friends with the contents of their packages, which happen to be party supplies in honor of Mail Duck. Sirotich’s art steals the show, with smiling faces and hidden shapes throughout in gentle greens, cotton-candy pinks, and highly saturated blues. While the 16 shaped flaps are easy for little fingers to lift, they won’t withstand robust play.

Mail Duck delivers delight, and toddlers will clamor for more. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: April 21, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-4197-3989-7

Page Count: 20

Publisher: abramsappleseed

Review Posted Online: March 29, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2020

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Another branded entry that offers little beyond the minimum requirements.


From the Pout-Pout Fish Mini Adventure series

The Pout-Pout Fish brand expands.

Halloween is here, and Mr. Pout-Pout Fish is giving out treats from his submarine home. Those familiar with the blue striped fish will find the usual uncluttered illustrations and rhyming scheme (“Who’s at the helm / of the spooky submarine? // It’s you, Mr. Fish! / Have a happy Halloween!”). New readers may be drawn in by the colorful costumes the various fish wear as they trick-or-treat along the ocean floor. Keen-eyed readers with some pumpkin-carving experience may wonder how a jack-o’-lantern can be lit under water. This board book is a fairly standard look at Halloween, putting a popular character in common holiday trappings and adding nothing else. Fans of the holiday will have to look elsewhere for a more exciting take on Halloween’s thrills.

Another branded entry that offers little beyond the minimum requirements. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 9, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-374-30191-0

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: Aug. 30, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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From the Llama Llama series

In this board book designed for the littlest llama lovers, adorable-as-ever Llama Llama (Llama Llama Red Pajama, 2005, etc.) gets ready for some Halloween fun.

Dewdney’s characteristic spare, apt rhymes convey a lot of action in effortlessly readable fashion. A charming and simple introduction to Halloween and its associated activities, this title finds little Llama Llama choosing and carving a pumpkin, pouring candy into bowls, picking out a costume and, finally, trick-or-treating. The costume Llama Llama decides to don—pointy teeth and a black mask and cape—is enough to frighten and fool his friends but not readers, who will immediately recognize and smile at the silly little mini-Dracula. With Dewdney’s characters as expressive as ever, young readers will be drawn right into the holiday fun, eagerly anticipating which costume Llama Llama will choose and excited to see him scare his friends and score some candy at trick-or-treat. In the equally appealing companion title, Llama Llama Jingle Bells,the little fellow gets ready for Christmas, baking and decorating some cookies in anticipation of Santa’s arrival. This simple holiday title will win Llama Llama new fans, and old friends will want to add it and its companion to their collections. (Board book. 1-2)


Pub Date: Aug. 19, 2014

ISBN: 978-0451469786

Page Count: 14

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: June 25, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2015

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