Great gobs of glue should be more fun than this. (Picture book. 4-7)



Can there be too much glue? Matty’s about to find out.

Matty’s art teacher warns him that too much glue will never dry, but Matty (and his dad) loves glue; they play with it constantly. So Matty finds the “fullest” bottle in the art room and squirts it all over his project. Then he flops down in the middle of the mess…and gets stuck. He’s “a blucky stucky mess!” His friends try to lasso him with yarn and haul him out, but the yarn breaks and gets stuck; now, he’s “a clingy stringy, blucky stucky mess.” A Lego tow truck snaps apart in another rescue attempt, making him a “click-brick, clingy stringy, blucky stucky mess!” When the bell rings, the glue’s dry, and dad must peel gluey Matty off the table. At home, he’s divested of his glue suit, and Dad puts a magnet on it and sticks it to the fridge. After dinner, the family explores the fun of duct tape. Despite the busy plot and superabundance of exclamation marks, Lefebvre’s debut never rises to the level of mayhem or fun it aspires to. The cumulative portion of the tale loses rhyme, rhythm and logic six pages before it ends. Retz’s Photoshop paintings are bright, wide-eyed and goofy, but they can’t add enough fun to compensate for the lackluster text.

Great gobs of glue should be more fun than this. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-9362612-7-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Flashlight Press

Review Posted Online: July 17, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2013

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A culturally intricate slice of a lupine courier’s life.


From the ¡Vamos! series

Little Lobo and his dog, Bernabé, journey through a Mexican mercado delivering diverse goods to a variety of booths.

With the aid of red words splattered throughout the spreads as labels, Raúl the Third gives an introduction to Spanish vocabulary as Little Lobo, an anthropomorphic wolf, leaves his house, fills his cart with objects from his warehouse, and delivers them to the market’s vendors. The journey also serves as a crash course in Mexican culture, as the images are packed with intertextual details such as food, traditional games, and characters, including Cantinflas, Frida Khalo, and Juan Gabriel. Readers acquainted with Raúl the Third’s characters from his Lowriders series with author Cathy Camper will appreciate cameos from familiar characters. As he makes his rounds, Little Lobo also collects different artifacts that people offer in exchange for his deliveries of shoe polish, clothespins, wood, tissue paper, paintbrushes, and a pair of golden laces. Although Raúl the Third departs from the ball-pen illustrations that he is known for, his depiction of creatures and critters peppering the borderland where his stories are set remains in his trademark style. The softer hues in the illustrations (chosen by colorist Bay) keep the busy compositions friendly, and the halftone patterns filling the illustrations create foregrounds and backgrounds reminiscent of Roy Lichtenstein’s pointillism.

A culturally intricate slice of a lupine courier’s life. (glossary) (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: April 2, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-328-55726-1

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Versify/HMH

Review Posted Online: Jan. 15, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2019

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It takes a village to make a school. In Chad, big brothers and sisters lead the way for younger children on the first day of school. Little Thomas is full of questions. When he and the other children arrive, there are no classrooms and no desks. But the teacher's there, holding a trowel. "We will build our school," she declares. Everyone sets to work, making mud bricks that dry in the sun and a roof out of grass and saplings. Thomas loves his lessons; every day he learns something new. At the end of the school year, the minds of the students "are fat with knowledge." And just in time: The rainy season arrives and makes short work of the schoolhouse. Come September, they'll start all over. Rumford's illustrations make great use of color, dark brown skin and bright shirts, shorts and dresses against golden backgrounds, the hues applied in smudgy layers that infuse each scene with warmth—until the gray rains arrive. It's a nifty social-studies lesson tucked into a warm tale of community. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-547-24307-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin

Review Posted Online: Oct. 1, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2010

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