A nice respite from tales of Pilgrims and of turkeys hiding from farmers.

Turkey loves to eat, and he loves his barnyard friends…but how many Thanksgiving dinners can one turkey eat?

“Pig, Horse, Goat and Sheep, Cow, and Mouse had each invited him to Thanksgiving dinner at their homes.” When Turkey thinks of all that good cooking, he’s sure he can handle five dinners. After stomach-stretching exercises, he heads to Pig’s for a yummy stew (worms included). He clears his plate and thinks it’s wonderful to feel a part of the family. After a nosh at Horse’s, Turkey has that same wonderful feeling playing race with the family. On to Goat and Sheep’s, Cow’s, and Mouse’s, where again he feels wonderfully at home (though his vest gets tighter and tighter). During the Mouse family parade, Turkey sees all his friends come out to watch; he’s so surprised and stuffed, Turkey topples over. He thinks it was worth it to spend time with all his friends…but next year, he decides he’ll just host them all at his house. Kenah’s holiday turkey tale of friendship and food will make animal lovers and vegetarians smile. Turkey, who looks both a little platypuslike and a little chickenesque in Talib’s textured cartoon illustrations, obviously enjoys all the company as much as he does stuffing his beak.

A nice respite from tales of Pilgrims and of turkeys hiding from farmers. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: Aug. 25, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-545-76109-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: April 14, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2015


High-quality, inclusive illustrations make this one stand out.

From the changing season to decorations and costumes, children anticipate Halloween.

Little readers will enjoy all of the familiar markers of the season included in this book: falling leaves, jack-o’-lanterns, Halloween costumes, candy, and trick-or-treating. Everett’s rhyming couplets bob along safely, offering nothing that will wow but enough to keep the pages turning. It’s Wen’s illustrations that give the most to readers, full of bustling scenes and lovely details. A double-page spread of the children in town in front of the candy store includes jars with individually drawn treats and other festive delicacies. The townwide celebration features instruments, creative costumes, and a diverse crowd of people. There are three children who appear as the focus of the illustrations, though there are many secondary characters. One bespectacled White child is drawn in a manual wheelchair, another has dark brown skin, the third presents Asian. The child in the wheelchair is shown as a full participant. Readers will enjoy spotting spooks like a vampire, goblin, and werewolf, as they sometimes appear in the background and other times blend in with the crowd. The familiar trappings of Halloween paired with the robust illustrations will have little readers wanting to reread even if the content itself is not startlingly new.

High-quality, inclusive illustrations make this one stand out. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-7282-0586-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky

Review Posted Online: July 13, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2021


Animated and educational.

A hare and a ground squirrel banter about the differences between related animals that are often confused for one another.

Jack is “no Flopsy, Mopsy, or Cottontail,” but a “H-A-R-E, hare!” Like sheep and goats, or turtles and tortoises, rabbits and hares may look similar, but hares are bigger, their fur changes color in the winter, and they are born with their eyes wide open. As the ground squirrel (not to be mistaken for a chipmunk (even though Jack cheekily calls it “Chippie”) and Jack engage in playful discussion about animals, a sneaky coyote prowls after them through the Sonoran Desert. This picture book conveys the full narrative in spirited, speech-bubbled dialogue set on expressive illustrations of talking animals. Dark outlines around the characters make their shapes pop against the softly blended colors of the desert backgrounds. Snappy back-and-forth paired with repetition and occasional rhyme enhances the story’s appeal as a read-aloud. As the story progresses, the colors of the sky shift from dawn to dusk, providing subtle, visual bookends for the narrative. One page of backmatter offers a quick guide to eight easily confused pairs, and a second turns a subsequent exploration of the book into a seek-and-find of 15 creatures (and one dessert) hidden in the desert. Unfortunately, while most of the creatures from the seek-and-find appear in poses that match the illustrations in the challenge, not all of them are consistently represented. (This book was reviewed digitally with 7-by-20-inch double-page spreads viewed at 53.3% of actual size.)

Animated and educational. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: March 16, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-358-12506-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: Jan. 12, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2021

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