The cheerful simplicity and sturdy pages ensure that this offering will both see and stand up to hard use until readers are...

HOOT

A HIDE-AND-SEEK BOOK OF COUNTING

From the My Little World series

This simple concept board book combines colors and counting.

In a rhyming game of hide-and-seek, a little blue owl finds four brightly colored friends. When it's his turn to hide, he goes back to sleep. Some of the scansion falters: “Little Blue says to the owls, ‘It's my turn everyone! / Now close your eyes and count to 5— / our play time's almost done.’ ” “Everyone” and “done” technically rhyme, but the rhythm is slightly off. The eye cutouts that begin with the front cover and grow a tiny bit smaller with each turn of the page make convenient finger holes for young children to grasp but become increasingly ineffective as owl eyes as they diminish in size. Consequently, Little Blue looks the most like an owl, while Little Purple looks owlish only because he is the exact same shape as Little Blue. The presentation of concepts is more successful. Little Blue counts just five colors—perfect for a baby's attention span. A graphic on the back cover highlights which developmental skills the book aims to address.

The cheerful simplicity and sturdy pages ensure that this offering will both see and stand up to hard use until readers are ready for Pat Hutchins’ classic Good-night, Owl! (1972). (Board book. 1-4)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-58925-595-1

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2015

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Perfect for Valentine’s Day, but the syrupy sweetness will cloy after the holiday.

THE ABCS OF LOVE

Animal parents declare their love for their offspring in alphabetical order.

Each page displays an enormous capital letter, one line of verse with the keyword capitalized, and a loving nonhuman parent gazing adoringly at their baby. “A is for Always. I always love you more. / B is for Butterfly kisses. It’s you that I adore.” While not named or labelled as such, the A is also for an alligator and its hatchling and B is for a butterfly and a butterfly child (not a caterpillar—biology is not the aim of this title) interacting in some way with the said letter. For E there are an elephant and a calf; U features a unicorn and foal; and X, keyed to the last letter of the animal’s name, corresponds to a fox and three pups. The final double-page spread shows all the featured creatures and their babies as the last line declares: “Baby, I love you from A to Z!” The verse is standard fare and appropriately sentimental. The art is cartoony-cute and populated by suitably loving critters on solid backgrounds. Hearts accent each scene, but the theme of the project is never in any doubt.

Perfect for Valentine’s Day, but the syrupy sweetness will cloy after the holiday. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-7282-2095-6

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Sourcebooks Wonderland

Review Posted Online: Jan. 27, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2021

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Bright, cheerful, and summery.

HOORAY FOR SUNNY DAYS!

Revel in the pleasures of summer days.

The text’s three rhyming quatrains extol the season’s joys, from “birds in leafy trees” and “happy bees” to “eating berry pie” and “twinkling fireflies.” Cottage-dwelling woodland mammals get the full digital cartoon treatment, with giant eyes, exuberantly bushy tails, and bright clothing, hats, and eyewear. Readers see them enjoying a range of outdoor activities, from picnicking and splashing around in a pond to running barefoot in the grass and lounging in a hammock. The adorable diminutive mammals are the stars of the book, but the lively insects and birds make their presences felt too. This simple but sweet addition to the ever expanding bookshelf of estival books for younger children is more about imagery than plot, but that’s OK. The rhymes scan well, and the anaphoric repetition lends itself to read-alouds. The consistently double-page, full-bleed spreads allow readers to sense the scope of summer’s bounty. The artwork’s palette tracks the day’s arc, with morning yellows and greens ceding to violets and blues as twilight falls. Longhi’s illustrations fairly sparkle with light and Lisa Frank–esque colors. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Bright, cheerful, and summery. (Board book. 1-4)

Pub Date: May 10, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-66591-241-9

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Jan. 25, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2022

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