ST. PATRICK'S DAY IN THE MORNING

Somewhere in Ireland, on Saint Patrick's day in the morning, Jamie wakes up early, resenting that he's too small to walk in the parade. So he dons his mother's raincoat, his father's hat, and his brother's green sash, takes another brother's flute, and with his dog Nell marches about in his own parade. Along the way Hobble the Hen Man gives him an egg, Mrs. Simms at the sweet shop (open early, it seems) gives him some ginger ale and a wee flag, he enjoys his drink on the parade's-end platform set up for the day's festivities, and then heads home with proud thoughts of the music he's played. Other small children might enjoy sharing underdog Jamie's secret, while sharing at the same time the author's pointed skepticism as to the beauty of his music. But they are unlikely to see the outing as much of a lark. Bunting tries too hard for color and imagery without supplying any narrative structure or incidents; and Brett's green and black drawings are just drab.

Pub Date: March 1, 1980

ISBN: 0899191622

Page Count: 36

Publisher: Clarion

Review Posted Online: April 17, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1980

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An unabashed love letter from mother.

I LOVE YOU, LITTLE POOKIE

From the Little Pookie series

A sweet celebration of the bond between a mother and her Pookie.

The eighth installment in this always charming series eschews the episodic drama and silliness of earlier outing such as Spooky Pookie (2015) in favor of a mom’s-eye-view celebration of her child and the time they spend together. There is, of course, nothing wrong with drama and silliness. But while the lack of conflict and plot in favor of unapologetic sentiment makes this book a quick read, that doesn’t make it any less endearing. The rhymed verse captures a mother’s wonder as she observes the many facets of her child’s personality: “Ah, Pookie. My little one. My funny one. My child. // Sometimes you are quiet. Sometimes you are wild.” On the simple joys of shared moments, she notes, “I love to go walking with you by my side. / I love when we sing when we go for a ride. // And I love just to watch as you think and you play. / The way that you are is a wonderful way.” Paired with author/illustrator Boynton’s irresistible renderings of a porcine mommy and her playful, snuggly little piglet, the result is impossible to fault. Whether quietly reading, running in a tiger suit, singing with mom in the car, ears flapping in the breeze, or enjoying the safety of mom’s embrace, Pookie’s appeal continues unabated.

An unabashed love letter from mother. (Board book. 1-4)

Pub Date: Dec. 4, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5344-3723-4

Page Count: 18

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Dec. 5, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2019

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It is a hug, a kiss, and a valentine rolled into one—and just as fleeting.

HAPPY HEART

In this heart-shaped confection, the narrator declares their love for young readers.

The edges of each page are cut into different designs to emulate the sun’s rays, the outlines of trees, the Earth, flowers, and more and are frosted with a sparkly layer of glitter that resists the energetic rubbing of little fingers. In the center of each image is a tiny, emoji-like icon grinning at readers, and brightly colored accompanying spot art is sprinkled throughout. Enthusiastic, mostly rhyming text appears in a multicolored type on the verso. The pages increase in size with each page turn, for a layered look when closed, culminating with a giant heart that bookends the smaller opening one as the prose declares: “For you my heart grows / because I love you so!” While the binding is narrow, the whole enterprise is considerably sturdy. It’s an entirely forgettable but bright bagatelle, good for a few readings.

It is a hug, a kiss, and a valentine rolled into one—and just as fleeting. (Board book. 6 mos.-3)

Pub Date: Dec. 3, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5344-3202-4

Page Count: 14

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Nov. 24, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2019

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