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THE FURTHER ADVENTURES OF THE OWL AND THE PUSSY-CAT

An enjoyable piece that will entice readers back to the original tale (conveniently re-illustrated by Voake and publishing...

Newlyweds Owl and Pussy-cat are ready for another adventure in this continuation of Edward Lear’s classic poem.

Picking up the Owl and the Pussy-cat’s story immediately following their nuptials, Donaldson’s new tale involves a crow’s theft of the Pussy-cat’s wedding ring and the couple’s acquisition of a hot air balloon in which to search for the thief. Freedom from the narrative constraints of Lear’s original work enables her to maintain the style of his original verse while introducing a host of new characters, including a Pobble with no toes, glove-knitting Doves, and a Dong with a brightly shining Nose. Though not as well-defined as the original cast, the new additions are whimsically illustrated by Voake, whose ink-and-watercolor drawings aptly convey both the Owl’s and the Pussy-cat’s sorrow at losing the ring and their adventurous spirits during the journey to recover it. Best of all, her renderings of the protagonists highlight their abiding love. The endpapers in particular set the tone of the new story and express to readers the difference between initial romance and married love. Using only soft blue hues, she depicts the married couple in a heart surrounded by birds and balloons, indicating that their love is unvarying and soaring.

An enjoyable piece that will entice readers back to the original tale (conveniently re-illustrated by Voake and publishing simultaneously). (Picture book. 2-6)

Pub Date: Jan. 3, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-7636-9081-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Oct. 10, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2016

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LITTLE BLUE TRUCK'S HALLOWEEN

Beloved Little Blue takes a bit of the mystery—and fear—out of Halloween costumes.

A lift-the-flap book gives the littlest trick-or-treaters some practice identifying partygoers under their costumes.

Little Blue Truck and his buddy Toad are off to a party, and they invite readers (and a black cat) along for the ride: “ ‘Beep! Beep! Beep!’ / says Little Blue. / ‘It’s Halloween!’ / You come, too.” As they drive, they are surprised (and joined) by many of their friends in costume. “Who’s that in a tutu / striking a pose / up on the tiniest / tips of her toes? / Under the mask / who do you see?” Lifting the flap unmasks a friend: “ ‘Quack!’ says the duck. / ‘It’s me! It’s me!’ ” The sheep is disguised as a clown, the cow’s a queen, the pig’s a witch, the hen and her chick are pirates, and the horse is a dragon. Not to be left out, Little Blue has a costume, too. The flaps are large and sturdy, and enough of the animals’ characteristic features are visible under and around the costumes that little ones will be able to make successful guesses even on the first reading. Lovely curvy shapes and autumn colors fade to dusky blues as night falls, and children are sure to notice the traditional elements of a Halloween party: apple bobbing, lit jack-o’-lanterns, and punch and treats.

Beloved Little Blue takes a bit of the mystery—and fear—out of Halloween costumes. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-544-77253-3

Page Count: 16

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: July 19, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2016

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LITTLE OWL'S NIGHT

Little Owl loves the night forest. He can’t imagine a better place. He glides from friend to friend, watching and listening....

A graceful bedtime story celebrates the beauty found in night.

Little Owl loves the night forest. He can’t imagine a better place. He glides from friend to friend, watching and listening. Hedgehog snuffles for mushrooms. Turtle hides in her shell as fireflies dot the sky. But try as he might, Little Owl cannot wake Bear inside the Grumbly Cave. He snores soundly. But what if the bear has never seen stars? As morning draws near, Little Owl settles in on his branch and whispers softly to his mother, “[T]ell me again how night ends.” “Spiderwebs turn to silver threads,” she begins. “The sky brightens from black to blue, blue to red, red to gold.” But Little Owl does not hear. His wide, innocent green eyes have already shut tight. Srinivasan’s picture-book debut beckons readers to follow this curiously adorable creature through the sky. The moon and stars illuminate the dark background, and a flat palette of black, greens and browns blankets the forest in quiet stillness. More lyrical than linear, the story flits from one animal to the next. But readers won’t mind.

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-670-01295-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Aug. 30, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2011

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