Printed on tear-proof pages, this offering presents a barnyard guessing games using aural and onomatopoeic clues.
“Did you hear that?” This opening query is printed in white on a solid black double-page spread. Next is another two pages listing sounds made by one farmyard critter: “I hear moo, moo, moo, and chew, chew, chew….” The page turn reveals that a large brown cow is making these noises while chewing its cud in a wide, flower-strewn field. This pattern is repeated six more times with “squealing and snorting” pigs, “honking and waddling” geese, a whinnying, trotting horse, and more. Vagnozzi’s friendly cartoon creatures steal the show in what looks to be a computer-assisted mélange of pen-and-ink drawings, painted swaths of color, and samplings of natural textures. Shand’s text, while playful and chock-full of vocabulary-building words, may prove a challenge for adult readers to get through without practice. Billed as a “transition” to take little readers from board books to picture books, the book has tear-resistant pages. However, they will wrinkle, and their thinness may make them a challenge for young, developing fingers to manipulate. The project ends with a speculation-prompting cliffhanger on the final two pages that reads: “Wait… / Did you hear that?”
A toddler-friendly and playful barnyard ballyhoo. (Picture book. 2-4)