Skip this for toddlers still learning about Easter activities and go with Aly Fronis and Sanja Rescek’s This Little Bunny...

TUCKER DIGS EASTER!

Tucker the lively white terrier returns in his fourth holiday board book (Gobble, Gobble, Tucker, 2014, etc.).

This time he uses his digging skills to help the Easter Bunny hide Easter eggs, wearing a pair of ears and a cotton ball tail as a disguise. Unfortunately, he hides them so well the kids can’t find them, and so he must help them by digging out all the Easter eggs again. Children involved in the egg hunt have dark as well as light skin tones and hair color. McGuirk’s simple gouache cartoon illustrations use child-friendly black outlines and vibrant colors; however, the Easter Bunny has the exact same expression throughout the book, making it difficult to guess whether he is happy or upset. Despite the board-book format, slight story, and childish illustrations, this offering will work best with kids older than toddlers, as it demands familiarity with the concept of Easter eggs and Easter egg hunts.

Skip this for toddlers still learning about Easter activities and go with Aly Fronis and Sanja Rescek’s This Little Bunny (2016) instead. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Feb. 14, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-7636-8536-2

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: March 15, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2017

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A satisfying friendship story to share with very young children in the days leading up to Halloween.

TEENY TINY GHOST

This board book twists the traditional “Teeny Tiny” tale into a less-scary Halloween treat.

This version uses a singsong-y rhythm and cadence to tell the story. “In the teeny tiny barn / Of a teeny tiny house... / Lived a teeny tiny ghost / and a teeny tiny mouse.” Of course the ghost (being teeny tiny) is not very frightening. “But the determined little ghost / Let her mighty courage through / And with a teeny tiny breath / She said a teeny tiny: boo.” Spoiler alert: After just seven page turns the ghost and mouse become friends: “And now the teeny tinies play / In the teeny tiny house. / Just a teeny tiny ghost / And her best friend, mouse.” Pumpkins decorate the cover and final spread and illustrations throughout are in autumnal hues. The fairly high-for-the-format word count—19 to 21 words per page—may be more than toddlers will sit still for, but the “teeny tiny” repetition and rhymes will help. The size (just 6 inches square) makes using the book with a group a challenge, but with a lap-sitting child, it’ll be a pleasure.

A satisfying friendship story to share with very young children in the days leading up to Halloween. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 30, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-31848-7

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: April 28, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2019

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Parents of toddlers starting school or day care should seek separation-anxiety remedies elsewhere, and fans of the original...

A KISSING HAND FOR CHESTER RACCOON

From the Kissing Hand series

A sweetened, condensed version of the best-selling picture book, The Kissing Hand.

As in the original, Chester Raccoon is nervous about attending Owl’s night school (raccoons are nocturnal). His mom kisses him on the paw and reminds him, “With a Kissing Hand… / We’ll never be apart.” The text boils the story down to its key elements, causing this version to feel rushed. Gone is the list of fun things Chester will get to do at school. Fans of the original may be disappointed that this board edition uses a different illustrator. Gibson’s work is equally sentimental, but her renderings are stiff and flat in comparison to the watercolors of Harper and Leak. Very young readers will probably not understand that Owl’s tree, filled with opossums, a squirrel, a chipmunk and others, is supposed to be a school.

Parents of toddlers starting school or day care should seek separation-anxiety remedies elsewhere, and fans of the original shouldn’t look to this version as replacement for their page-worn copies. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: April 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-933718-77-4

Page Count: 14

Publisher: Tanglewood Publishing

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2014

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