100 FIRST WORDS

The titular words are divided by topic with animals participating along the way.

This board book reads exactly as expected. Common “first words” are organized into thematic sections like “toys and games,” “at the park,” and “things that go.” Wide-eyed animals are shown riding on a bus, using the potty, and talking on a cellphone (labeled telephone). All of the scenes and words are fairly predictable, making it familiar to toddlers but not necessarily exposing them to new vocabulary unless this is truly the first of its ilk they are reading. The “parts of the body” pages use three monkeys to demonstrate those parts, omitting tail, ears, and facial features. The choice of monkey rather than human models is an odd one, since this book is meant for very young learners just beginning to name and identify these parts of their own bodies. The “things that go” spread is the most visually interesting—possibly overstimulating for younger readers. There is plenty for caregivers to talk about with children here, in contrast to the bare-bones “clothes” spread, for example. The illustrations are cutesy and two-dimensional. This makes the pictures easy to identify, but it also means they lack detail and complexity. Sturdy and sized for small hands, this book does indeed present 100 words but offers little to make it stand out among the many other similar titles already on shelves.

Does the job. (Board book. 1-2)

Pub Date: Sept. 14, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-68010-687-9

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: July 27, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2021

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A solid, attractive vocabulary builder.

BABY'S FIRST WORDS

A little girl explores her surroundings in this board book.

Each turn of the page offers a different scene with objects labeled in bold, black text. The brown-haired, peach-skinned toddler spends time with her interracial dads (one’s black, and the other has olive skin and black hair) playing in the park, eating lunch, taking a bath, and eventually going to bed. Each double-page spread focuses on one setting, activity, or theme, as in one of various types of locomotion, another set in a kitchen at lunchtime, and another that focuses on emotions. Labels are printed in boldface type, sometimes with an extra descriptor: “loud fire engine”; “excited wiggle.” A Spanish-language version of the book, Mis Primeras Palabras, is concurrently published, with identical illustrations but swapping Spanish descriptors in for English ones. The illustrations employ a dark color palette that leans heavily on purples, greens, oranges, and browns to render the chunky and curved objects. The compositions are a little cluttered, with each scene depicting about 10 new words. Little ones will learn about clothes, food, emotions, animals, and more in this fairly extensive but still compact resource.

A solid, attractive vocabulary builder. (Board book. 1-2)

Pub Date: April 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-78285-321-3

Page Count: 30

Publisher: Barefoot Books

Review Posted Online: May 10, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2017

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