There are lots of noises and many other animals that make Felix the tree frog worry.
Young readers could start to fear for his safety, but the book’s narrator constantly works to reassure and engage them. “Plip! Plop! Splash! What’s that noise? Felix looks worried, doesn’t he? Let’s turn the page and show him there’s nothing to be scared of.” It turns out that a “friendly turtle” has made the noise. Other animals, such as a “shiny beetle,” “playful monkeys,” and a “slithery snake,” cross the little frog’s path, and there are other actions for readers to take: “Clap your hands and shout, ‘Shoo, slithery snake’ ”; counting the branches of a tall tree (the book must be turned 90 degrees to view it) that Felix climbs to get away from a “busy woodpecker.” When something else comes up that tall tree, the narrator exhorts readers to say “Leap, frog!” But Felix is a little more aware of his own environment than readers are, and all’s well. The vibrant, full-bleed illustrations are reminiscent of Eric Carle’s collaged flora and fauna. While the text reads a little bumpily, it is engaging and the pictures should work well with a group. Some children may want to know if any of the other animals really could be harmful to the little tree frog. This book does not provide the answers.
A cautionary tale on a minor note. (Picture book. 4-6)