RAIN DANCE

A collection of farmyard creatures cavorts among the raindrops in this latest release in the Harper Growing Tree series. A simply wrought rhyme introduces the numbers one through ten as everything from a pair of skittering spiders to several scurrying ducklings scatter with the onslaught of rain. Written for the smallest toddler, Appelt’s verses are appropriately brief without sacrificing any of the tale’s fun. The playful, rhyming word-pairs highlight a bevy of familiar critters to pique the interest of young readers. Each new number has a two-page spread devoted to it, featuring the numeral in oversized print in the upper left-hand corner and a pair of words describing the creatures’ activities—“5 Piggies squish.” Chollat’s accompanying illustrations capture a child’s delight in all things splashy. The full-bleed, boldly colored paintings depict a motley assortment of critters gleefully scampering hither and yon. Delightfully silly drawings of the animals, from the Cheshire-cat grins on the frolicking felines to the herd of dancing ponies, are ideal for a preschool audience. Also, the uncluttered backgrounds and the large-sized figures make counting opportunities a bit easier for novices. Puddle-loving tots are bound to revel in all this squashy fun and learn a little something, too. (Picture book. 1-4)

Pub Date: May 31, 2001

ISBN: 0-694-01291-2

Page Count: 24

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2001

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

While the ghoulies here are more cute than scary, “jump,” “quiver,” and “run” will probably get across the idea to even the...

HALLOWEEN ABC

An abecedary of spooky or autumnal delights for the littlest readers.

Each letter of the alphabet is highlighted on a single page, the upper- and lowercase letters appearing in the upper left-hand corner, while the object is named at the bottom or in the upper right. Ho keeps her illustrations simple and places them against plain, brightly colored backgrounds, keeping them accessible to those still learning about Halloween’s many icons. The almost-fluorescent orange cover is sure to attract attention, and the palette of black, purple, orange, yellow, and radioactive green enhances the Halloween mood. But while many of the chosen items will be expected—bats, ghost, haunted house, owl, skeleton, vampire, witch, zombie—others are rather odd choices. J is for “jump,” not jack-o’-lantern (“pumpkin” is illustrated with a jack-o’-lantern); K is for a mostly black “kitten” standing in a coffin; and N is for “nightmare,” which is virtually impossible to express visually for this age group without provoking said nightmare. Here, a lavender-skinned child (zombie?) in pajamas and nightcap has arms raised and mouth open wide in surprise—perhaps in response to the mummy across the gutter? The tough letters use “quiver,” spider-decorated “underpants” on a monster, and “extra treats,” the x underlined.

While the ghoulies here are more cute than scary, “jump,” “quiver,” and “run” will probably get across the idea to even the youngest listeners that Halloween can be scary. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 18, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-7636-9527-9

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Nosy Crow/Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Aug. 7, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2018

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

TIME TO PEE!

That most basic of functions, subject of countless earnest tomes, at last receives a treatment whose instructional value is equaled by its entertainment value. “If you ever get that funny feeling . . . ” reads a series of signs borne by a host of cheerful, cartoony mice as they fly, drive, march, and (in at least one instance) get shot from a cannon past a bevy of dubious-looking multicultural children: “don’t PANIC! Don’t FRET!” The simple text is direct, not without humor (“And please don’t ignore it!”), and wonderfully child-wise, providing the critical reassurance that “everything will still be right where it was.” The multitudinous mice in their kite-flying, instrument-playing, sky-diving, helicopter-driving variety constitute a visual feast that enlivens the simple text and will keep the inevitable re-readings from becoming snooze-inducing. The uncluttered layout allows the children to take center stage while the legions of mice, with their text-bearing signs, happily perform their supporting roles. Those kids move from doubt to magnificent relief to pride in a happily encouraging progression, making this offering number one in the potty department. (Picture book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2003

ISBN: 0-7868-1868-9

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Hyperion

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2003

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more