Gently makes the case that everyone should follow their bliss.

EENY UP ABOVE

There’s no place like home, but you can still make room for adventure.

Sisters Eeny, Meeny, and Miney Mole live companionably in their deep, dark hole. All feel safe in this atmosphere that’s always the same. Older sisters Meeny and Miney don’t ever want to leave, but the much-younger Eeny also loves the world Up Above. Both Meeny and Miney worry about Eeny’s trips Up Above and warn her of the possible dangers; the worst of all are “humans.” This makes Eeny wary but does not deter her. She brings a shovel and pail when she makes her explorations Up Above, and learns tidbits about life there from new friends Worm, Cat, Snake, and Centipede. One day, Something large with five wriggly parts comes down over her head. It smells of dirt and digging. She is frightened but reminds herself that “some moles are content in their old holes. But some moles are not me.” The feeling of Something’s paw is soft and comforting and new. Like Spring. There are some holes in this story; in particular, children will wonder just why Eeny always totes shovel and pail but hardly ever seems to use them. But Brown’s soft illustrations echo Beatrix Potter’s in both delicacy and whimsy, and Yolen’s story of bravery justified should put a smile in readers’ hearts. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Gently makes the case that everyone should follow their bliss. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Oct. 5, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-62371-865-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Crocodile/Interlink

Review Posted Online: July 14, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2021

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

This warm family story is a splendid showcase for the combined talents of Medina, a Pura Belpré award winner, and Dominguez,...

MANGO, ABUELA, AND ME

Abuela is coming to stay with Mia and her parents. But how will they communicate if Mia speaks little Spanish and Abuela, little English? Could it be that a parrot named Mango is the solution?

The measured, evocative text describes how Mia’s español is not good enough to tell Abuela the things a grandmother should know. And Abuela’s English is too poquito to tell Mia all the stories a granddaughter wants to hear. Mia sets out to teach her Abuela English. A red feather Abuela has brought with her to remind her of a wild parrot that roosted in her mango trees back home gives Mia an idea. She and her mother buy a parrot they name Mango. And as Abuela and Mia teach Mango, and each other, to speak both Spanish and English, their “mouths [fill] with things to say.” The accompanying illustrations are charmingly executed in ink, gouache, and marker, “with a sprinkling of digital magic.” They depict a cheery urban neighborhood and a comfortable, small apartment. Readers from multigenerational immigrant families will recognize the all-too-familiar language barrier. They will also cheer for the warm and loving relationship between Abuela and Mia, which is evident in both text and illustrations even as the characters struggle to understand each other. A Spanish-language edition, Mango, Abuela, y yo, gracefully translated by Teresa Mlawer, publishes simultaneously.

This warm family story is a splendid showcase for the combined talents of Medina, a Pura Belpré award winner, and Dominguez, an honoree. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Aug. 25, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-7636-6900-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: April 15, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2015

Did you like this book?

more