A solid and sweet look at the traditional and expanding roles of a father.

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DADDIES DO

A rhyming ode to all the things daddies do with their children.

Bathing and fishing, making yummy snacks, building forts, snapping photos, giving a boost: Daddies do it all in this rollicking look at fatherhood. “Who takes you on outings / and simply won’t care / if you’ve picked your own outfit / or have messy hair? / DADDIES DO. / THAT’S WHO!” The lion dad wrestles with his cub, proclaiming how much stronger his tot is. The peacock father lets his child help on a project. The octopus child is cheered up by dad when they’re sick. And more than one parent (of any gender) may smile knowingly at the kangaroo dad who falls asleep reading to his joey. Evans’ rhyme and rhythm are spot-on, and the refrain ensures readers’ participation during read-alouds. Ferro’s brightly colored cartoon illustrations were created using gouache, colored pencil, and ink. The dad-child relationships ooze sweetness, and an owl unobtrusively placed within many spreads cues the “Who…” questions as well as the final “Guess who?” There is nary a mother in sight, and few pages show siblings. These dads prepare food and bathe and soothe their children, as nurturing as can be.

A solid and sweet look at the traditional and expanding roles of a father. (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: May 1, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-4549-2171-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Sterling

Review Posted Online: March 18, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2018

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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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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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