This book contains many colors, but, ironically, it feels a little drab.

CHAMELEON'S COLORS

Chameleon uses her ability to change and mimic to demonstrate seven basic colors.

With elements of toy, concept, and rhyming book, this title tries to cover a wide spectrum, but the elements never quite blend. Die-cut openings of diminishing size change the illustrated reptile’s color with each page turn. (The smooth, round edges on the die cuts are a thoughtful touch.) Inside, both art and iambic pentameter rhymes brim with effusive energy but lack nuance. The repetitious text identifies each targeted color and compares it to something found in nature: “I am Chameleon, and this is my tree. / I hide in its leaves—they’re green just like me.” Chameleon, loosely drawn in exuberantly bright art with a watercolor effect, begins as a grinning, green-headed lizard with colorful stripes down her body. As the book progresses, both surroundings and Chameleon’s head clearly change color, so that the yellow-headed chameleon munches a golden mango, then camouflages its pink body among pink blooms. It ends predictably, with a selection of all the colored items clustered together and Chameleon, now crowned and with rainbow stripes restored, declaring herself a “colorful queen.” Though the back cover calls the narrative a “trip along the rainbow,” it is not in rainbow order. It’s adequate, but there are more innovative books about colors and chameleons available. Companion title Shark’s Numbers shares the same die-cut design, but with nothing significant changing about the shark with each page turn, it feels like an arbitrary gimmick.

This book contains many colors, but, ironically, it feels a little drab. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Feb. 23, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-68010-616-9

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: March 31, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2021

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A pleasant holiday spent with a perfectly charming character.

SPOOKY POOKIE

One of Boynton's signature characters celebrates Halloween.

It's Halloween time, and Pookie the pig is delighted. Mom helps the little porker pick out the perfect Halloween costume, a process that spans the entire board book. Using an abcb rhyme scheme, Boynton dresses Pookie in a series of cheerful costumes, including a dragon, a bunny, and even a caped superhero. Pookie eventually settles on the holiday classic, a ghost, by way of a bedsheet. Boynton sprinkles in amusing asides to her stanzas as Pookie offers costume commentary ("It's itchy"; "It's hot"; "I feel silly"). Little readers will enjoy the notion of transforming themselves with their own Halloween costumes while reading this book, and a few parents may get some ideas as well. Boynton's clean, sharp illustrations are as good as ever. This is Pookie's first holiday title, but readers will surely welcome more.

A pleasant holiday spent with a perfectly charming character. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: July 7, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-553-51233-5

Page Count: 18

Publisher: Robin Corey/Random

Review Posted Online: July 27, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2016

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LLAMA LLAMA TRICK OR TREAT

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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