ALICE IN POP-UP WONDERLAND

Seibold’s zany re-envisioning of Lewis Carroll’s classic story is not for purists. While the text is Carroll’s, it is drastically abbreviated with nary a transition in sight; Alice’s fall down the rabbit hole ends one page while the next starts with her kicking a small animal up a chimney. Readers need to either come to the book familiar with the story or, better yet, simply sit back and enjoy a nonsense ride through Seibold’s Wonderland. Alice, the creatures that populate her adventures, and their environments hark back to cartoons of the ’50s with flat expanses of color, retro patterns, and puddle-like shadows. There are a number of pull-tabs that will intrigue young readers, including a nifty one that causes the Cheshire Cat to disappear, leaving only his grin. This is an enjoyable, though—if compared to the Sabuda (above)—ephemeral romp. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2003

ISBN: 0-439-41184-X

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Orchard/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2003

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A DOG NAMED SAM

A book that will make young dog-owners smile in recognition and confirm dogless readers' worst suspicions about the mayhem caused by pets, even winsome ones. Sam, who bears passing resemblance to an affable golden retriever, is praised for fetching the family newspaper, and goes on to fetch every other newspaper on the block. In the next story, only the children love Sam's swimming; he is yelled at by lifeguards and fishermen alike when he splashes through every watering hole he can find. Finally, there is woe to the entire family when Sam is bored and lonely for one long night. Boland has an essential message, captured in both both story and illustrations of this Easy-to-Read: Kids and dogs belong together, especially when it's a fun-loving canine like Sam. An appealing tale. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: April 1, 1996

ISBN: 0-8037-1530-7

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1996

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A quiet story of sharing with no strings attached.

EXTRA YARN

A little girl in a town of white snow and soot-blackened chimneys opens a small box and discovers a never-ending gift of colorful yarn.

Annabelle knits herself a sweater, and with the leftover yarn, she knits one for her dog, and with the yarn left over from that, she knits one for a neighbor and for her classmates and for her teacher and for her family and for the birdhouse and for the buildings in town. All and everything are warm, cozy and colorful until a clotheshorse of an archduke arrives. Annabelle refuses his monetary offers, whereupon the box is stolen. The greedy archduke gets his just deserts when he opens the box to find it empty. It wends its way back to Annabelle, who ends up happily sitting in a knit-covered tree. Klassen, who worked on the film Coraline, uses inks, gouache and colorized scans of a sweater to create a stylized, linear design of dark geometric shapes against a white background. The stitches of the sweaters add a subdued rainbow. Barnett entertained middle-grade readers with his Brixton Brothers detective series. Here, he maintains a folkloric narrative that results in a traditional story arc complete with repetition, drama and a satisfying conclusion.

A quiet story of sharing with no strings attached. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Jan. 17, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-06-195338-5

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Oct. 5, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2011

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