A great book to share with sensitive children concerned about the steadiness of parental love and a pleasant example of...

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LOVEY BUNNY

A winsome girl rabbit is her mother’s “lovey bunny,” but when she borrows her mother’s fancy dress with unfortunate results, she wonders if the affection from her mother is in jeopardy.

The story begins: “I’m such a lovey bunny! My Mama tells me so. I love just about everything!” Pencil-and-gouache drawings with digital color show a family of four rabbits looking dapper in human clothes. Lombardi chooses quick declarations, shown on slips of lined handwriting paper arranged scrapbook-style, to set the tone for the story. “I love my family. I love to sit and read. I love the SUN!” But what this little bunny really loves is to play dress-up. When she spies a beautiful, long, black dress her mother made, she decides to try it on. Lovey Bunny decides she looks too pretty to stay inside the house. Readers will either giggle or gasp as she rides her skateboard through her neighborhood. Soon the dress’ skirt is in shreds. When she returns home, her mother is at a loss: she was to wear that dress to a party that evening. Lovey Bunny is clearly upset with herself but soon gets to work to “repair” the dress. Using the materials available to her, she tapes the fabric together, glues on tinfoil “sequins,” and applies plastic patches. The ending satisfies by delivering an unexpected twist.

A great book to share with sensitive children concerned about the steadiness of parental love and a pleasant example of creative problem-solving. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: March 3, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-4197-1485-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Abrams

Review Posted Online: March 17, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2015

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This celebration of cross-generational bonding is a textual and artistic tour de force.

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LAST STOP ON MARKET STREET

A young boy yearns for what he doesn’t have, but his nana teaches him to find beauty in what he has and can give, as well as in the city where they live.

CJ doesn’t want to wait in the rain or take the bus or go places after church. But through Nana’s playful imagination and gentle leadership, he begins to see each moment as an opportunity: Trees drink raindrops from straws; the bus breathes fire; and each person has a story to tell. On the bus, Nana inspires an impromptu concert, and CJ’s lifted into a daydream of colors and light, moon and magic. Later, when walking past broken streetlamps on the way to the soup kitchen, CJ notices a rainbow and thinks of his nana’s special gift to see “beautiful where he never even thought to look.” Through de la Peña’s brilliant text, readers can hear, feel and taste the city: its grit and beauty, its quiet moments of connectedness. Robinson’s exceptional artwork works with it to ensure that readers will fully understand CJ’s journey toward appreciation of the vibrant, fascinating fabric of the city. Loosely defined patterns and gestures offer an immediate and raw quality to the Sasek-like illustrations. Painted in a warm palette, this diverse urban neighborhood is imbued with interest and possibility.

This celebration of cross-generational bonding is a textual and artistic tour de force. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Jan. 8, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-399-25774-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: Oct. 22, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2014

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

YOUR BABY'S FIRST WORD WILL BE DADA

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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