IF YOU SEE A KITTEN

Butler (Hush, Little Ones, 2002, etc.) leads young readers on an alliterative tour of creatures. From pudgy swines to enormous proboscideans, Butler covers critters big and small. The repetitive rhythm of the tale is ideal for young readers, simply naming an animal and describing a response. “If you see a prickly porcupine . . . say, ‘Ouch!’ ” Starting with only the most adorable of creatures, the tale begins with a heavy dose of cuteness in which curious kittens romp while petite door mice slumber. Savvy readers will soon realize that surprises are in store as Butler slyly interjects some of the less savory members of the species, with “slimy slugs” slipping past a “pretty peacock.” The fun culminates in the arrival of a cantankerous crocodile, to which readers are prompted to shriek (what else of course) “HELP!” The final page depicts all of the animals along with the appropriate exclamation. The delicately detailed illustrations are quite wonderful, though a little unrealistic in some cases. Situated against a plain creamy background, each intricately drawn creature is an exquisite naturalistic rendering, requiring no extra fanfare. Perfect for preschoolers and younger, Butler’s tale easily lends itself to group read aloud settings, with each successive reading sure to become more riotous as the children become familiar with their responses. (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: March 1, 2003

ISBN: 1-56145-108-8

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Peachtree

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2003

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LITTLE QUACK

The odyssey of ducklings venturing forth from their comfortable nests into the big world resonates with children and has been a well-traveled subject of many works geared toward young readers. Thompson’s (Mouse’s First Valentine, 2002, etc.) latest effort will certainly appeal to youngsters despite its lack of originality. Mama Duck is coaxing her five hesitant ducklings (Widdle, Waddle, Piddle, Puddle, and Little Quack) into the water one at a time. A “quack-u-lator” at the bottom of the pages adds an interesting mathematical element, helping children count along as ducklings jump into the pond. Mama encourages each nervous duckling to “paddle on the water with me . . . you can do it . . . I know you can.” Overcoming their initial fright, the first four ducklings “splish, splash, sploosh, and splosh” happily into the water. The simple tale’s climax occurs when Little Quack wavers at the water’s edge. “Could he do it? Did he dare?” Not to spoil the ending, but suffice it to say all five ducklings swim off “proud as can be.” In his debut effort, Anderson’s bright and colorful illustrations are lively and captivating. The five adorable ducklings embark on this rite of passage sporting unique looks ranging from Mohawk-type head feathers to orange spots and flowered hair adornments. A pleasant enough take on an old standby. (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 2003

ISBN: 0-689-84723-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2002

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This TV rerun in board-book form has nothing new to offer.

PEPPA'S GIANT PUMPKIN

From the Peppa Pig series

Peppa hopes to join her classmates in a Halloween pumpkin competition in this adaptation of a story from the popular British television program Peppa Pig.

With the help of Granny and Grandpa Pig, Peppa turns her giant pumpkin, which is the size of a compact car, into a jack-o’-lantern. The trio is flummoxed when it comes time to transport the pumpkin to the competition, so they call on Miss Rabbit and her helicopter to airlift the pumpkin to the festivities as Peppa and her grandparents ride inside. Peppa arrives just in time for the contest and wins the prize for best flying pumpkin. The scenes look as if they are pulled directly from the television show, right down to the rectangular framing of some of the scenes. While the story is literally nothing new, the text is serviceable, describing the action in two to three sentences per page. The pumpkin-shaped book and orange foil cover will likely attract youngsters, whether they are Peppa fans or not.

This TV rerun in board-book form has nothing new to offer. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 30, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-33922-2

Page Count: 10

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Sept. 24, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2019

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