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


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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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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