TALL

The lovable chimp, Bobo, of the wilds of Africa and previous title Hug (2000), returns with a desire to be taller than his small stature permits. First standing on top of a rock, his buddies—frog, lion cub, elephant calf and giraffe—help him successively reach greater heights by allowing him to stand on their shoulders or heads. When giraffe’s horned head proves to be a bit too high and unsteady, Bobo wobbles and falls down to Mommy’s waiting and loving arms. Two dominant alternating words, “small/tall,” build to the climatic three word finale, “fall/Bobo/Mommy.” The practically wordless text offers a dramatic scenario of consecutive views with large gouache and marker-pen jungle scenes in greens and pale orange/yellows. Expressive animal caricatures depict the emotions and desires of this cause-and-effect sequence story representing the wish of every child to be as big or as tall as his surrounding older siblings and friends. Endearingly simple and effective for the youngest. (Picture book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2005

ISBN: 0-7636-2784-4

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2005

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A comforting celebration of everyday courage with lots of charm to boot.

I AM SO BRAVE!

From the Empowerment series

This upbeat ode to conquering fears will resonate with tots both timid and not.

The sparse text of this sturdy board book is a series of three quatrains, presented one brief line per spread, describing the various fears a little boy has overcome: “I was scared of big dogs. / Then I made a new friend. // I was scared of the water. / Now I love the deep end.” Having also conquered fears of the dark, loud horns and goodbyes, he proclaims on the final pages: “I’m not scared like before. / I am so brave!” The skillful verses read smoothly and depict situations that toddlers and preschoolers will relate to. The illustrations center around a wide-eyed African-American child as the main character, with Caucasian children also populating some of the scenes, including the final spread, which features the narrator leaping boldly into a pit of colored balls. The design and color scheme, mostly bright blues, yellows and reds, give the title a distinctly vintage feel, which will lend it appeal to both adults and children.

A comforting celebration of everyday courage with lots of charm to boot. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: July 15, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-4197-0937-1

Page Count: 12

Publisher: abramsappleseed

Review Posted Online: June 27, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2015

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A bright and friendly but no more than serviceable board book.

MY FIRST PEEK-A-BOO ANIMALS

From the World of Eric Carle series

Little readers play peekaboo with animals.

Carle’s iconic illustrations form the centerpiece of this simple lift-the-flap board book. Each double-page spread features an animal obscured by a flap (a solid block of trademark, textured Carle color) on one side and a four-line abcb stanza describing the animal on the opposite page. Readers are given hints about the hidden creature before they play peekaboo and lift the flap to reveal a monkey, horse, turtle, and more. “I’m a big cat, / but I don’t purr. / I’ve got black stripes / and bright orange fur.” Although most of the facts offered are scientifically valid, the ambiguously worded modifier for the monkey’s clue—“With my long tail, / I swing in the trees”—risks imparting the misinformation that monkeys suspend themselves from their tails. Carle’s illustrations are as recognizable to little readers as the characters on Sesame Street or Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, and the familiarity breeds appreciation. There’s nothing truly special or distinctive regarding the mechanics of this particular title, but the familiar look acts as a comfort food–esque motivation to get little ones’ attention.

A bright and friendly but no more than serviceable board book. (Board book. 1-2)

Pub Date: June 6, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5344-0105-1

Page Count: 18

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: June 19, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2017

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