The sweet-sour bite of the first fall apple; the crunching sound of the red and orange leaves; and the spooky ghosts of Halloween all come alive in this frisky celebration of autumn. As the children carve pumpkins: “Teeth are zigzag / Tail goes wigwag / Seeds are slimy / Scoop the goop.” These lyrical verses with simple rhymes make this a perfect choice for a quick read-aloud. The cut-paper collage illustrations make the crisp leaves seem like they could be scooped up by the handful. The rope tie on the scarecrow and the fluffy tissue paper clouds seem to pop right off the page. Reading it during the summer might make children yearn for the first signs of falling leaves. (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: Sept. 15, 2001

ISBN: 0-8234-1583-X

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2001

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Ten rubber ducks are packed in a box and tied to a boat. A storm blows up on their trip across the ocean, spills them out, and they drift in different directions. One encounters a dolphin, another meets up with a seal, and so on. The tenth rubber toy runs into a family of wild ducks and they all nestle down under a friendly moon. Laura Ingalls Wilder Award–recipient and perennial favorite Carle revisits the counting-book format with his unmistakable blocky, painted collages. All of his well-known components are present: a list of animals—many of them recognizable from earlier works—repeated words and phrases, bright friendly art on lots of white background, and a noisemaker at the end. He offers his take on the 1992 news story that inspired Eve Bunting and David Wisniewski to create Ducky (1997). While not Carle’s best work, it still has those saturated colors that have such appeal. Audiences of one or many will enjoy it, especially if they get to press the duck and make him squeak. (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 2005

ISBN: 0-06-074075-2

Page Count: 36

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2005

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Instills a sense of well-being in youngsters while encouraging them to explore the natural world.


This reassuring picture book exemplifies how parents throughout the animal kingdom make homes for their offspring.

The narrative is written from the point of view of a parent talking to their child: “If you were a beaver, I would gnaw on trees with my teeth to build a cozy lodge for us to sleep in during the day.” Text appears in big, easy-to-read type, with the name of the creature in boldface. Additional facts about the animal appear in a smaller font, such as: “Beavers have transparent eyelids to help them see under water.” The gathering of land, air, and water animals includes a raven, a flying squirrel, and a sea lion. “Home” might be a nest, a den, or a burrow. One example, of a blue whale who has homes in the north and south (ocean is implied), will help children stretch the concept into feeling at home in the larger world. Illustrations of the habitats have an inviting luminosity. Mature and baby animals are realistically depicted, although facial features appear to have been somewhat softened, perhaps to appeal to young readers. The book ends with the comforting scene of a human parent and child silhouetted in the welcoming lights of the house they approach: “Wherever you may be, you will always have a home with me.”

Instills a sense of well-being in youngsters while encouraging them to explore the natural world. (Informational picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: Nov. 12, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-63217-224-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Little Bigfoot/Sasquatch

Review Posted Online: July 28, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2019

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