“B” forewarned—there’s nothing special enough to warrant buying this app, even at the modest price of $1.99.

READ REVIEW

BUD THE BUNNY

A mediocre concept book featuring Bud the Brown Bunny and the letter B.

The text “This is a bunny” and a plain, black bunny silhouette introduce this book. A descriptor such as “black-tailed” and “bent eared” or an activity such as “bee watching” and “blossom eating” is added on each page, building to a long mouthful of a sentence at the end: "This is Bud, the blue-eyed, black-tailed, bent eared, ball balancing, bee watching, boulder sitting, blossom eating, bandana wearing, bubble blowing, beach dreaming, brown birthday bunny with the beige belly." The concept has potential, but unfortunately, the execution is undistinguished. The sound effects are unimaginative, and the cartoon-style illustrations are flat and mundane, with little charm or energy. Bud himself is actually a little creepy, as the illustrator chose to draw him with blue eyes and no whites or pupils. Each page features a standard animation, such as a bouncing ball, a color-changing bandana or a bubble wand that blows bubbles. Clare Kramer’s (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) narration is actually the best part of the app, injecting some vitality that partially compensates for the lackluster illustrations. There is a navigation grid on each page that allows quick access to any page. Bud has his own website, and a portion of the proceeds goes to Kids Need to Read, a nonprofit dedicated to improving children’s literacy.

“B” forewarned—there’s nothing special enough to warrant buying this app, even at the modest price of $1.99. (iPad storybook app. 2-5)

Pub Date: May 9, 2012

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Bengal Studio

Review Posted Online: June 20, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2012

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Beloved Little Blue takes a bit of the mystery—and fear—out of Halloween costumes.

LITTLE BLUE TRUCK'S HALLOWEEN

A lift-the-flap book gives the littlest trick-or-treaters some practice identifying partygoers under their costumes.

Little Blue Truck and his buddy Toad are off to a party, and they invite readers (and a black cat) along for the ride: “ ‘Beep! Beep! Beep!’ / says Little Blue. / ‘It’s Halloween!’ / You come, too.” As they drive, they are surprised (and joined) by many of their friends in costume. “Who’s that in a tutu / striking a pose / up on the tiniest / tips of her toes? / Under the mask / who do you see?” Lifting the flap unmasks a friend: “ ‘Quack!’ says the duck. / ‘It’s me! It’s me!’ ” The sheep is disguised as a clown, the cow’s a queen, the pig’s a witch, the hen and her chick are pirates, and the horse is a dragon. Not to be left out, Little Blue has a costume, too. The flaps are large and sturdy, and enough of the animals’ characteristic features are visible under and around the costumes that little ones will be able to make successful guesses even on the first reading. Lovely curvy shapes and autumn colors fade to dusky blues as night falls, and children are sure to notice the traditional elements of a Halloween party: apple bobbing, lit jack-o’-lanterns, and punch and treats.

Beloved Little Blue takes a bit of the mystery—and fear—out of Halloween costumes. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-544-77253-3

Page Count: 16

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: July 20, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2016

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

PEPPA'S GIANT PUMPKIN

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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