T-winsome.

READ REVIEW

TAKE TWO!

A CELEBRATION OF TWINS

Veteran poets tap into the never-ending interest in twins with a collection of poetry dedicated to twosomes.

Children’s poet laureate Lewis, a twin himself, and prolific children’s poet Yolen, the grandmother of twins, present 44 poems about twins. Readers will have to guess each poem’s originator, however, as none of the poems are signed. Divided into four sections comprising “Twins in the Waiting Womb,” “Twinfants,” “How to Be One” (about childhood with a twin) and “Famous Twins,” the poems explore milestones as twins, the push and pull of twin relationships and the need for individuality. Although some of the poems just reach mediocre, others are positively endearing (“Good night, / Good night. / The single moon / Shines down. / And soon / One sleep / You’ll share”). Readers will enjoy dipping into the book and savoring a few poems at a time rather than reading the book in its entirety, as taken altogether, the prevailing rhythmic rhyme can become monotonous. Intermittent twin facts run along the bottom, while Blackall, illustrator of another popular pair, Ivy + Bean, enhances the collection with a variety of twin sets in her signature patterned illustrations, rendered in watercolor, pencil and painted paper collage. Children may muse at the twin depictions, but the real consumers will be the proud caregivers of twins.

T-winsome. (Poetry. 4-8)

Pub Date: March 1, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-7636-3702-6

Page Count: 72

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Feb. 5, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2012

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Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles.

THE DINKY DONKEY

Even more alliterative hanky-panky from the creators of The Wonky Donkey (2010).

Operating on the principle (valid, here) that anything worth doing is worth overdoing, Smith and Cowley give their wildly popular Wonky Donkey a daughter—who, being “cute and small,” was a “dinky donkey”; having “beautiful long eyelashes” she was in consequence a “blinky dinky donkey”; and so on…and on…and on until the cumulative chorus sails past silly and ludicrous to irresistibly hysterical: “She was a stinky funky plinky-plonky winky-tinky,” etc. The repeating “Hee Haw!” chorus hardly suggests what any audience’s escalating response will be. In the illustrations the daughter sports her parent’s big, shiny eyes and winsome grin while posing in a multicolored mohawk next to a rustic boombox (“She was a punky blinky”), painting her hooves pink, crossing her rear legs to signal a need to pee (“winky-tinky inky-pinky”), demonstrating her smelliness with the help of a histrionic hummingbird, and finally cozying up to her proud, evidently single parent (there’s no sign of another) for a closing cuddle.

Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-60083-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2019

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Fun but earnest, this rhyming romp reminds readers that one young person can make a difference.

SOFIA VALDEZ, FUTURE PREZ

From the Questioneers series

Sofia Valdez proves that community organizers of any age can have a positive impact.

After a trash-heap eyesore causes an injury to her beloved abuelo, Sofia springs into action to bring big change to her neighborhood. The simple rhymes of the text follow Sofia on her journey from problem through ideas to action as she garners community support for an idyllic new park to replace the dangerous junk pile. When bureaucracy threatens to quash Sofia’s nascent plan, she digs deep and reflects that “being brave means doing the thing you must do, / though your heart cracks with fear. / Though you’re just in Grade Two.” Sofia’s courage yields big results and inspires those around her to lend a hand. Implied Latinx, Sofia and her abuelo have medium brown skin, and Sofia has straight brown hair (Abuelo is bald). Readers will recognize Iggy Peck, Rosie Revere, and Ada Twist from Beaty’s previous installments in the Questioneers series making cameo appearances in several scenes. While the story connects back to the title and her aptitude for the presidency in only the second-to-last sentence of the book, Sofia’s leadership and grit are themes throughout. Roberts’ signature illustration style lends a sense of whimsy; detailed drawings will have readers scouring each page for interesting minutiae.

Fun but earnest, this rhyming romp reminds readers that one young person can make a difference. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-4197-3704-6

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Abrams

Review Posted Online: Nov. 24, 2019

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