GULLIVER SNIP

The dedication in Kay’s imaginative debut says it all: “For those who take adventures instead of taking baths.” Each night, instead of bathing, Gulliver Snip takes “a trip in his wonderful clipper ship / that his mother called the bathtub.” On this particular trip, he faces a storm, a sinking ship, a ride through a cave in a packing trunk, an island landing and getting treed by a tiger. Full-bleed left-hand-page illustrations show readers what Gulliver Snip imagines—the wooden ship, foamy green waves and his captain’s uniform. Meanwhile, smaller gray-toned illustrations above the text perfectly capture the reality—Gulliver bailing water out of the tub, bumping down the stairs in a suitcase and climbing his mother’s lamp. It is here that his mother finally discovers his escapades and trundles him off to bed to dream of his next adventure. While Gulliver’s creativity is to be applauded, parents may find it unfortunate that there are no consequences for his destructive actions. Still, a nice foray into the realm of imagination. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: June 1, 2008

ISBN: 978-0-8050-7992-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2008

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Part of a spate of books intent on bringing the garbage collectors in children’s lives a little closer, this almost matches...

TRASHY TOWN

Listeners will quickly take up the percussive chorus—“Dump it in, smash it down, drive around the Trashy town! Is the trash truck full yet? NO”—as they follow burly Mr. Gilly, the garbage collector, on his rounds from park to pizza parlor and beyond.

Flinging cans and baskets around with ease, Mr. Gilly dances happily through streetscapes depicted with loud colors and large, blocky shapes; after a climactic visit to the dump, he roars home for a sudsy bath.

Part of a spate of books intent on bringing the garbage collectors in children’s lives a little closer, this almost matches Eve Merriam’s Bam Bam Bam (1995), also illustrated by Yaccarino, for sheer verbal and visual volume. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: April 30, 1999

ISBN: 0-06-027139-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1999

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A strong series start.

GAME OVER, SUPER RABBIT BOY!

From the Press Start! series , Vol. 1

In a video game, a superpowered rabbit must rescue a singing dog that brings everyone happiness.

In the frame story, a brown-skinned human protagonist plays a video game on a handheld console evocative of the classic Nintendo Gameboy. The bulk of the book relates the game’s storyline: Animal Town is a peaceful place where everyone is delighted by Singing Dog, until the fun-hating King Viking (whose black-mustachioed, pink-skinned looks reference the Super Mario Brothers game series villain, Wario) uses his army of robots to abduct Singing Dog. To save Singing Dog—and fun—the animals send the fastest among them, Simon the Hedgehog, to get Super Rabbit Boy (who gains speed and jumping powers by eating special carrots) to save the day. The chapters take Super Rabbit Boy through video game levels, with classic, video game–style settings and enemies. Throughout the book, when the game’s player loses either a life in the game or the game entirely, the unnamed kid must choose to persevere and not give up. The storylines are differentiated by colorful art styles—cartoonish for the real world, 8-bit pixel-sprite–style for the game. The fast, repetitive plot uses basic, simple sentences and child-friendly objects of interest, such as lakes of lava, for children working on reading independence, while the nerdy in-jokes benefit adults reading with a child.

A strong series start. (Early reader. 5-7)

Pub Date: Jan. 3, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-338-03472-1

Page Count: 80

Publisher: Branches/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Sept. 19, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2016

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