The exclamation begs for read-alouds and invites children from Oklahoma or Alabama to try out their best New York accents...

STOP FEEDIN' DA BOIDS!

New to city living, Swanda (olive-skinned and espresso-haired) installs a feeding station on her fire escape, unaware of the teeming, cooing hordes that will instantly (and incessantly) descend from the skies, leaving their marks on the neighbors and sidewalks below.

Readers come face to beak with Swanda’s predicament in a startling double-page spread: a sea of birds, feathers, and yellow marble eyes. The freaky flock advances, unblinking, right off the page, bobbing dumbly in that mildly unnerving, pugilistic pigeon-y fashion. Vibrant pastels describe both multitudes of pigeon grays and also the vibrancy of city life, saturated with colors, cultures, accents, and activities. Expansive full-bleed spreads capture both urban density and verticality. Buildings, brickwork, and wry sidewalk vignettes fill both pages and readers’ imaginations. Swanda’s neighbors, with their beards, hair rollers, smiles, admonitions, dogs, pearls, cat’s-eye glasses, and bowler, Rastafarian, and Hasidic hats, are what people might call real New Yorkers, who together represent an articulate, authentic vision of an interconnected city. Their resounding, choral shout up to her apartment window comes booming in the delightful local dialect: “SWANDA, YOU GOTTA STOP FEEDIN’ DA BOIDS!”

The exclamation begs for read-alouds and invites children from Oklahoma or Alabama to try out their best New York accents and for a minute feel part of the big city. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: April 4, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-77138-613-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Kids Can

Review Posted Online: Feb. 1, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

SCAREDY SQUIRREL HAS A BIRTHDAY PARTY

From the Scaredy Squirrel series , Vol. 5

When Scaredy Squirrel plans a party, he concentrates on maximum security, not maximum fun. His checklist: "Confirm date of birth; pick a safe location; choose party colors; get tuxedo dry-cleaned; prepare cake recipe; practice breathing (to blow up balloons/blow out candles); mail party invitation to myself." That's right—there’s only one guest at Scaredy's birthday party, and it's himself. But when his chum Buddy sends him a birthday card, he reconsiders his guest list to include his pal, even making the momentous decision to hold his party on the ground instead of in his tree. Replete with the lists and diagrams that are this OCD rodent's hallmarks, the story unfolds with both humor and some useful etiquette tips. From conversational gambits (good: "If you were a tree, what type of tree would you be?"; bad: "Is that a muskrat on your head? Oops... it's a toupee") to the "dos and don'ts of partying" (do: sit quietly; don't: double-dip), kids will find much to laugh at and think about. Typically (for a Scaredy adventure), despite a plan so complete it includes tooth-brushing breaks, a surprise happens—party animals show up! Watt’s wry digital illustrations make the most of the perceived mayhem, using a host of graphic conventions to tell her story. There's no question it's a formula by now, but it's still a winning one. Many happy returns, Scaredy. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-1-55453-468-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Kids Can

Review Posted Online: Jan. 31, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2011

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

PIRATES DON'T TAKE BATHS

Echoes of Runaway Bunny color this exchange between a bath-averse piglet and his patient mother. Using a strategy that would probably be a nonstarter in real life, the mother deflects her stubborn offspring’s string of bath-free occupational conceits with appeals to reason: “Pirates NEVER EVER take baths!” “Pirates don’t get seasick either. But you do.” “Yeesh. I’m an astronaut, okay?” “Well, it is hard to bathe in zero gravity. It’s hard to poop and pee in zero gravity too!” And so on, until Mom’s enticing promise of treasure in the deep sea persuades her little Treasure Hunter to take a dive. Chunky figures surrounded by lots of bright white space in Segal’s minimally detailed watercolors keep the visuals as simple as the plotline. The language isn’t quite as basic, though, and as it rendered entirely in dialogue—Mother Pig’s lines are italicized—adult readers will have to work hard at their vocal characterizations for it to make any sense. Moreover, younger audiences (any audiences, come to that) may wonder what the piggy’s watery closing “EUREKA!!!” is all about too. Not particularly persuasive, but this might coax a few young porkers to get their trotters into the tub. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: March 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-399-25425-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: Jan. 26, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2011

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more