The tale has a random feel about it, but one might suppose that underpants of any gender are always amusing to the under-7...

FRANCIS, THE LITTLE FOX

Translated from the French, this tale based on the app Renaud le petit renard perhaps loses something in print.

Francis is a smartly dressed little fox who spends Saturdays with his father at Mr. Li’s Small Socks Laundromat. He likes getting away from his annoying little sister, Lola, but fears Mr. Li’s granddaughter, Lily Rain Boots, who is always playing tricks. He makes lists of things he likes about laundry day (mixing patterns and colors! Sock tossing!), but while he and his dad are out having frozen yogurt, Lily adds lots of extra detergent to their laundry. It makes a huge mess of bubbles and terrifies the laundry cat, whose name is Mouse. Calling for Mouse terrifies the buxom Madame Bernadette, who thinks it’s a real mouse. Lily guiltily cleans up the mess but not before playing one final trick, which involves the beribboned unmentionables of the zaftig Madame Bernadette. And that’s about it, but it takes over 90 pages to get there. The simple shapes in dusty pastels evoke a French or Québecois city in which animals walk upright and dress as nattily as the humans. Mr. Li and Lily are definitely Asian, and Madame Bernadette wears high heels and a heart-shaped neckline.

The tale has a random feel about it, but one might suppose that underpants of any gender are always amusing to the under-7 set. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-894786-40-9

Page Count: 92

Publisher: Kids Can

Review Posted Online: July 3, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2013

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Readers who (inexplicably) find David Lawrence’s Pickle and Penguin (2004) just too weird may settle in more comfortably...

LOST AND FOUND

A lad finds a penguin on his doorstep and resolutely sets out to return it in this briefly told import. 

Eventually, he ends up rowing it all the way back to Antarctica, braving waves and storms, filling in the time by telling it stories. But then, feeling lonely after he drops his silent charge off, he belatedly realizes that it was probably lonely too, and turns back to find it. Seeing Jeffers’s small, distant figures in wide, simply brushed land- and sea-scapes, young viewers will probably cotton to the penguin’s feelings before the boy himself does—but all’s well that ends well, and the reunited companions are last seen adrift together in the wide blue sea. 

Readers who (inexplicably) find David Lawrence’s Pickle and Penguin (2004) just too weird may settle in more comfortably with this—slightly—less offbeat friendship tale. (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2006

ISBN: 0-399-24503-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2005

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PUG BLASTS OFF

From the Diary of a Pug series , Vol. 1

A cuddly, squishy pug’s puggy-wuggy diary.

Equipped with both #pugunicorn and #pughotdog outfits, pug Baron von Bubbles (aka Bub) is the kind of dog that always dresses to impress. Bub also makes lots of memorable faces, such as the “Hey, you’re not the boss of me!” expression aimed at Duchess, the snooty pink house cat. Some of Bub’s favorite things include skateboarding, a favorite teddy, and eating peanut butter. Bub also loves Bella, who adopted Bub from a fair—it was “love at first sniff.” Together, Bub and Bella do a lot of arts and crafts. Their latest project: entering Bella’s school’s inventor challenge by making a super-duper awesome rocket. But, when the pesky neighborhood squirrel, Nutz, makes off with Bub’s bear, Bub accidentally ruins their project. How will they win the contest? More importantly, how will Bella ever forgive him? May’s cutesy, full-color cartoon art sets the tone for this pug-tastic romp for the new-to–chapter-books crowd. Emojilike faces accentuate Bub’s already expressive character design. Bub’s infectious first-person narration pushes the silly factor off the charts. In addition to creating the look and feel of a diary, the lined paper helps readers follow the eight-chapter story. Most pages have fewer than five sentences, often broken into smaller sections. Additional text appears in color-coded speech bubbles. Bella presents white.

Totes adorbs. (Fiction. 5-7)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-53003-2

Page Count: 80

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: July 14, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2019

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