A warmhearted tale of a child, a dog, and their peaceful, friendly, and inviting neighborhood.

READ REVIEW

WINDOWS

Readers are invited to match their observant eyes with those of a child out for an evening walk.

A young child of color puts on a red hoodie and goes for a walk in his neighborhood in the hours between sunset and bedtime. The neighborhood is mostly residential with two-story homes, apartment houses, and some small businesses. The family dog goes along as the child (referred to as “you” throughout in the second-person narrative) notes the animals—a cat and a raccoon—they pass by. The child notes the windows and what the people or animals that can be seen within their frames are doing; they may be playing an instrument or dancing or painting. At the end of the walk they go past a house with no lights on; its windows “leave you to fill them up with stories.” Finally, home beckons, and child and mother curl up in a comfy chair for a bedtime story. Denos’ story is quiet, thoughtful, and paced to the beat of a gentle rhythm. Debut illustrator Goodale’s delicately detailed ink, watercolor, letterpress, and digital collage illustrations display palettes of the evening and night skies with beautifully nuanced shades of yellow, gold, and blue. The red-hooded child of color with dog can’t help but recall Peter and Willie, and this book is a lovely, affirming follow-up.

A warmhearted tale of a child, a dog, and their peaceful, friendly, and inviting neighborhood. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 17, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-7636-9035-9

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Aug. 2, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2017

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Though it will never usurp Dr. Seuss, it will still find a home where Christian families of faith seek inspirational picture...

WHEN I PRAY FOR YOU

Turner adds another title to his picture-book series that highlights the miracles in the mundane (When God Made Light, 2018, etc.).

In the vein of children’s-bookshelf stalwart Oh, the Places You’ll Go, Turner’s rhyming text includes both prayers and life advice for a growing child, beginning with infancy and moving on to adolescence. At times the rhyme and meter are strained, muddling meaning and making the tempo feel occasionally awkward when read aloud. Overall, though, the book executes its mission, presenting Christian theological truths within the rhythmic inspirational text. For this third series installment Turner’s text is paired with a new illustrator, whose bright illustrations of wide-eyed children have great shelf appeal. While David Catrow’s previous illustrations in the series featured effervescent black protagonists, the child in Barnes’ illustrations appears white, though she occupies an otherwise diverse world. While illustrated as a prayer from a mother for her daughter, the text itself is gender neutral.

Though it will never usurp Dr. Seuss, it will still find a home where Christian families of faith seek inspirational picture books. (Picture book/religion. 3-6)

Pub Date: Feb. 19, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-52565058-4

Page Count: 48

Publisher: WaterBrook

Review Posted Online: Dec. 5, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2019

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Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles.

THE DINKY DONKEY

Even more alliterative hanky-panky from the creators of The Wonky Donkey (2010).

Operating on the principle (valid, here) that anything worth doing is worth overdoing, Smith and Cowley give their wildly popular Wonky Donkey a daughter—who, being “cute and small,” was a “dinky donkey”; having “beautiful long eyelashes” she was in consequence a “blinky dinky donkey”; and so on…and on…and on until the cumulative chorus sails past silly and ludicrous to irresistibly hysterical: “She was a stinky funky plinky-plonky winky-tinky,” etc. The repeating “Hee Haw!” chorus hardly suggests what any audience’s escalating response will be. In the illustrations the daughter sports her parent’s big, shiny eyes and winsome grin while posing in a multicolored mohawk next to a rustic boombox (“She was a punky blinky”), painting her hooves pink, crossing her rear legs to signal a need to pee (“winky-tinky inky-pinky”), demonstrating her smelliness with the help of a histrionic hummingbird, and finally cozying up to her proud, evidently single parent (there’s no sign of another) for a closing cuddle.

Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-60083-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2019

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