Outsized animals open wide, inviting younger children to do the same.

“Tiger, tiger, / is that you, / hiding in / the tall bamboo?” Six wild animals pace, glide, or slither through natural settings—seen alternately from the side and then full page and face on in images that gape with the lift of unusually large flaps to expose toothy or fanged maws and a rousing “GRRRR GRRRR” or other prompt. In addition to the tiger, readers meet a crocodile, a generic snake, a monkey, and a lion, each set against a clean background with the occasional whimsical touch (a dragonfly gives the tiger a side-eye; a frog looks nervously at the crocodile). Along with building up to repeated crescendos in her accompanying rhymes (“Such pointy teeth, / your tail so long, / such scaly scales, / and jaws / so strong”) Kerouli uses big, rounded, simplified shapes and bright color contrasts to create both instant recognition and immediate visual drama. Even with a slow reading it’s all over too soon, but the pictures are tailor-made for sharing with big groups, and all the roaring, snapping, and hissing will leave audiences of any size set for follow-up action rhymes, a round of “Old MacDonald Had a Farm,” or a high-volume thematic cousin like Brian McLachlan’s convention-busting What Noise Do I Make? (2016). Alas, the flaps are flimsy enough that they will not likely withstand direct use by children.

Roaring good fun. (Novelty/picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: June 1, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-5476-0641-2

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Review Posted Online: March 2, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2021

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Plotless and pointless, the book clearly exists only because its celebrity author wrote it.


A succession of animal dads do their best to teach their young to say “Dada” in this picture-book vehicle for Fallon.

A grumpy bull says, “DADA!”; his calf moos back. A sad-looking ram insists, “DADA!”; his lamb baas back. A duck, a bee, a dog, a rabbit, a cat, a mouse, a donkey, a pig, a frog, a rooster, and a horse all fail similarly, spread by spread. A final two-spread sequence finds all of the animals arrayed across the pages, dads on the verso and children on the recto. All the text prior to this point has been either iterations of “Dada” or animal sounds in dialogue bubbles; here, narrative text states, “Now everybody get in line, let’s say it together one more time….” Upon the turn of the page, the animal dads gaze round-eyed as their young across the gutter all cry, “DADA!” (except the duckling, who says, “quack”). Ordóñez's illustrations have a bland, digital look, compositions hardly varying with the characters, although the pastel-colored backgrounds change. The punch line fails from a design standpoint, as the sudden, single-bubble chorus of “DADA” appears to be emanating from background features rather than the baby animals’ mouths (only some of which, on close inspection, appear to be open). It also fails to be funny.

Plotless and pointless, the book clearly exists only because its celebrity author wrote it. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: June 9, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-250-00934-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Feiwel & Friends

Review Posted Online: April 15, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2015

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


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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