This fur-raising one-to-10-and-back-again counting book perfectly captures the rollicking, manic joy of dogs off the leash.

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TWO DOGS ON A TRIKE

Careening canine countdowns have never been so much fun!

An inadvertently opened gate beckons, and an adventurous spotted pooch clad in striped leggings and slick boots makes a stealthy getaway with an obliging trike-riding poodle. However, the stern, ever vigilant family cat is not caught unawares. Quickly donning running gear, the determinedly resourceful feline is soon on the tail of not one, not two, but ultimately nine thrill-seeking, barking fugitives. Pizza on a train, busting a groove on a ferry—no chance to party is overlooked. Discarding in turn every mode of pursuit along the way, from skates to helicopter, the intrepid calico finally faces down the drooling mob inside a—spaceship! The panicked dogs backtrack until the original troublemaker is finally locked behind bars. The End—or is it? One paw lick later, two cats on a trike take off with a skateboarding mouse in hot pursuit….Trolleys, trains, ferries, hot air balloons, and more fondly evoke the energy of P.D. Eastman’s Go, Dog. Go! (1961). Snyder’s spare, snappy rhymes give Rosenthal all the fuel needed to hilariously execute eye-popping images of raucous canine chaos. From a guitar-playing dachshund in a cone of shame to a boat-driving pug, this tongue-lolling wild bunch can really get it on.

This fur-raising one-to-10-and-back-again counting book perfectly captures the rollicking, manic joy of dogs off the leash. (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: May 19, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-4197-3891-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: abramsappleseed

Review Posted Online: Feb. 26, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2020

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THE WONKY DONKEY

The print version of a knee-slapping cumulative ditty.

In the song, Smith meets a donkey on the road. It is three-legged, and so a “wonky donkey” that, on further examination, has but one eye and so is a “winky wonky donkey” with a taste for country music and therefore a “honky-tonky winky wonky donkey,” and so on to a final characterization as a “spunky hanky-panky cranky stinky-dinky lanky honky-tonky winky wonky donkey.” A free musical recording (of this version, anyway—the author’s website hints at an adults-only version of the song) is available from the publisher and elsewhere online. Even though the book has no included soundtrack, the sly, high-spirited, eye patch–sporting donkey that grins, winks, farts, and clumps its way through the song on a prosthetic metal hoof in Cowley’s informal watercolors supplies comical visual flourishes for the silly wordplay. Look for ready guffaws from young audiences, whether read or sung, though those attuned to disability stereotypes may find themselves wincing instead or as well.

Hee haw. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: May 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-545-26124-1

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Dec. 29, 2018

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A comical, fresh look at crayons and color

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THE DAY THE CRAYONS QUIT

Duncan wants to draw, but instead of crayons, he finds a stack of letters listing the crayons’ demands in this humorous tale.

Red is overworked, laboring even on holidays. Gray is exhausted from coloring expansive spaces (elephants, rhinos and whales). Black wants to be considered a color-in color, and Peach? He’s naked without his wrapper! This anthropomorphized lot amicably requests workplace changes in hand-lettered writing, explaining their work stoppage to a surprised Duncan. Some are tired, others underutilized, while a few want official titles. With a little creativity and a lot of color, Duncan saves the day. Jeffers delivers energetic and playful illustrations, done in pencil, paint and crayon. The drawings are loose and lively, and with few lines, he makes his characters effectively emote. Clever spreads, such as Duncan’s “white cat in the snow” perfectly capture the crayons’ conundrum, and photographic representations of both the letters and coloring pages offer another layer of texture, lending to the tale’s overall believability.

A comical, fresh look at crayons and color . (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: June 27, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-399-25537-3

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: April 15, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2013

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