Still, in this day and age of lice, parents may wish the snowmen shared something other than hats.

READ REVIEW

CAN'T WE SHARE?

From the Little Snowman Stan series

This sharing lesson is about as didactic as they come.

Little Snowman Stan lives with his friends (oddly, there are no family relationships) in Freezeland, where it is always cold and snowy. While the snowmen all look a little different, each wears a hat of some sort. That is, until Dmitri arrives without one—a blizzard blew his hat away: “Sad and without my hat, I kept going. Until I arrived here.” Impetuously, the generous and bighearted Stan hands over his own blue plaid hat so Dmitri can wear it for a few days. But Dmitri has no intention of giving it back. The snowmen meet and discuss solutions to the problem, but all focus on either punishing Dmitri or forcing either Dmitri or Stan to live hatless. But Stan comes up with a sharing solution acceptable to all: They will rotate the hats so that no one goes more than one day bareheaded. The watercolor snowmen convey emotion through the curve of their mouths and the roundness of their eyes. It’s a cute-enough, though plodding, story with sweet illustrations, but readers are practically hit over the head with the sharing message. Who knows, though—didactic sometimes proves to be pretty popular; look at Rainbow Fish.

Still, in this day and age of lice, parents may wish the snowmen shared something other than hats. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-60537-121-4

Page Count: 30

Publisher: Clavis

Review Posted Online: Sept. 12, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2012

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Sweet, but like marshmallow chicks, just a bit of fluff.

THE LITTLEST EASTER BUNNY

From the Littlest series

The smallest bunny in Easter Town finds that she and her little chick friend are big enough to help the Easter Bunny prepare for the annual Easter egg hunt.

In the fifth entry in the Littlest series, Penny the bunny wants to help get ready for Easter. All the rabbits in her family are busy with their special jobs, getting eggs, candy, and baskets in order, but little Penny seems too small or clumsy to be of any help. Her parents and siblings try to let her assist them, but she falls into a vat of dye, spills marshmallow goo, gets tangled in the strands of a basket, and fails to fill even one Easter basket. Feeling dejected, Penny befriends a tiny chick named Peck. With the help of Penny’s family, Penny and Peck make miniature treats and petite baskets suitable to their own size. When the Easter Bunny’s main helpers fall ill, Penny and Peck convince the Easter Bunny that their small size will help them do the best job of finding spots to hide eggs as well as their own tiny basket creations. This too-pat conclusion doesn’t quite hold up to logical analysis, as the full-size eggs and baskets are still too large for Penny and Peck to handle. Bland cartoon illustrations are filled with bunnies in candy-bright pastels with a greeting-card cuteness quotient.

Sweet, but like marshmallow chicks, just a bit of fluff. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Jan. 7, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-338-32912-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Dec. 8, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2020

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Still, this young boy’s imagination is a powerful force for helping him deal with life, something that should be true for...

OLIVER AND HIS EGG

Oliver, of first-day-of-school alligator fame, is back, imagining adventures and still struggling to find balance between introversion and extroversion.

“When Oliver found his egg…” on the playground, mint-green backgrounds signifying Oliver’s flight into fancy slowly grow larger until they take up entire spreads; Oliver’s creature, white and dinosaurlike with orange polka dots, grows larger with them. Their adventures include sharing treats, sailing the seas and going into outer space. A classmate’s yell brings him back to reality, where readers see him sitting on top of a rock. Even considering Schmid’s scribbly style, readers can almost see the wheels turning in his head as he ponders the girl and whether or not to give up his solitary play. “But when Oliver found his rock… // Oliver imagined many adventures // with all his friends!” This last is on a double gatefold that opens to show the children enjoying the creature’s slippery curves. A final wordless spread depicts all the children sitting on rocks, expressions gleeful, wondering, waiting, hopeful. The illustrations, done in pastel pencil and digital color, again make masterful use of white space and page turns, although this tale is not nearly as funny or tongue-in-cheek as Oliver and His Alligator (2013), nor is its message as clear and immediately accessible to children.

Still, this young boy’s imagination is a powerful force for helping him deal with life, something that should be true for all children but sadly isn’t. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: July 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-4231-7573-5

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2014

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