A gentle blend of storytelling, travelogue, and reassurance and reinforcement for children beginning to explore the world.

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UP IN SPACE

AN ADVENTURE AT THE SPACE NEEDLE

From the Lindie Lou Adventure Series series , Vol. 2

The adventures of a sunny-natured pup continue as she adjusts to her new home in Seattle in the second installment of a travel-centered chapter-book series.

The first book in this series by Bender (Lindie Lou, Adventure Series: Flying High, 2016) took a spirited little dog named Lindie Lou through the first months of her puppyhood with her family in Missouri. It concluded with a plane trip that ends where this book begins: Seattle. There, Lindie Lou meets her new human family and sees some Seattle sights, including Pike Place Market, where Lindie Lou reunites with Max, the old dog who reassured her during their flight to Washington, and the Space Needle, where a frightened Lindie Lou inadvertently causes chaos in a gift store. As before, the pup’s lessons learned and emotions speak to her target audience: young readers whose increasing exposure to the wider world can be both intimidating and exciting. The little dog learns lessons about caution and earning trust, and when she feels overwhelmed, she has the comfort of her favorite toy and the arms of human parent Kate. (This effort to be relatable sometimes comes at the expense of responsible canine caretaking; e.g., Kate lets Lindie Lou trot off with Max at the open-air market and allows random children in a park to grab at and play with her.) Willows’ (Lindie Lou, Adventure Series: Flying High, 2016) cartoon-style illustrations, which share space with the well-spaced text, offer bright colors, clarity, and an endearing, cuddly puppy with big paws and fluffy ears. Different lettering styles add reading fun by giving visual emphasis to certain words. The story’s ending sets up Lindie Lou’s next adventure—a trip to an organic farm. In keeping with the series’ travel theme, the author again includes a quiz, fun facts, things to do and places to go in Seattle, and internet resources. (A couple of grammatical fixes are needed.)

A gentle blend of storytelling, travelogue, and reassurance and reinforcement for children beginning to explore the world.

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-943493-18-0

Page Count: 172

Publisher: Pina Publishing

Review Posted Online: Jan. 3, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2017

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THE WONKY DONKEY

The print version of a knee-slapping cumulative ditty.

In the song, Smith meets a donkey on the road. It is three-legged, and so a “wonky donkey” that, on further examination, has but one eye and so is a “winky wonky donkey” with a taste for country music and therefore a “honky-tonky winky wonky donkey,” and so on to a final characterization as a “spunky hanky-panky cranky stinky-dinky lanky honky-tonky winky wonky donkey.” A free musical recording (of this version, anyway—the author’s website hints at an adults-only version of the song) is available from the publisher and elsewhere online. Even though the book has no included soundtrack, the sly, high-spirited, eye patch–sporting donkey that grins, winks, farts, and clumps its way through the song on a prosthetic metal hoof in Cowley’s informal watercolors supplies comical visual flourishes for the silly wordplay. Look for ready guffaws from young audiences, whether read or sung, though those attuned to disability stereotypes may find themselves wincing instead or as well.

Hee haw. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: May 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-545-26124-1

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Dec. 29, 2018

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THE SNAIL AND THE WHALE

Like an ocean-going “Lion and the Mouse,” a humpback whale and a snail “with an itchy foot” help each other out in this cheery travelogue. Responding to a plaintive “Ride wanted around the world,” scrawled in slime on a coastal rock, whale picks up snail, then sails off to visit waters tropical and polar, stormy and serene before inadvertently beaching himself. Off hustles the snail, to spur a nearby community to action with another slimy message: “SAVE THE WHALE.” Donaldson’s rhyme, though not cumulative, sounds like “The house that Jack built”—“This is the tide coming into the bay, / And these are the villagers shouting, ‘HOORAY!’ / As the whale and the snail travel safely away. . . .” Looking in turn hopeful, delighted, anxious, awed, and determined, Scheffler’s snail, though tiny next to her gargantuan companion, steals the show in each picturesque seascape—and upon returning home, provides so enticing an account of her adventures that her fellow mollusks all climb on board the whale’s tail for a repeat voyage. Young readers will clamor to ride along. (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: March 1, 2004

ISBN: 0-8037-2922-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2004

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