While it’s nothing out of the ordinary, toddlers will gravitate to all the bells and whistles in this offering.


From the My First Touch and Feel Sound Book series

Little fingers can press buttons to hear various sounds, touch tactile elements, and see photos of everyday objects.

Each double-page spread highlights a different category of noisemaker, including animals, vehicles, and foodstuffs. The recto features a large photo of an animal or object that includes an embedded fabric swatch. When pressed, a button under the fabric activates a battery-operated sound chip safely screwed into the back of the book. Little digits have to hit the button just right to activate the noisemaker and may require adult help. On the toy-themed page, an image of a drum includes a vinyl patch, and when pressed, an adult voice says the word “drum” followed by a recording of a drum being played. The verso features brightly colored panels with clear, captioned photos of blocks, a white doll, a kite, and such. The text is standard fare, focusing on encouraging youngsters to interact with the book: “Touch the apple to hear it crunch!” Some of the tactile elements are more satisfying than others; the mewing kitten’s fur is nice and soft, but the duck’s feathers are difficult to “ruffle” as the text prompts. The book ends with a “Bedtime” spread complete with moon, pajamas, clock, and a teddy bear to touch, make snore, and play a music-box lullaby.

While it’s nothing out of the ordinary, toddlers will gravitate to all the bells and whistles in this offering. (Board book. 6 mos.-2)

Pub Date: March 1, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-680105-41-4

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: Feb. 13, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2018

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Perfect for Valentine’s Day, but the syrupy sweetness will cloy after the holiday.


Animal parents declare their love for their offspring in alphabetical order.

Each page displays an enormous capital letter, one line of verse with the keyword capitalized, and a loving nonhuman parent gazing adoringly at their baby. “A is for Always. I always love you more. / B is for Butterfly kisses. It’s you that I adore.” While not named or labelled as such, the A is also for an alligator and its hatchling and B is for a butterfly and a butterfly child (not a caterpillar—biology is not the aim of this title) interacting in some way with the said letter. For E there are an elephant and a calf; U features a unicorn and foal; and X, keyed to the last letter of the animal’s name, corresponds to a fox and three pups. The final double-page spread shows all the featured creatures and their babies as the last line declares: “Baby, I love you from A to Z!” The verse is standard fare and appropriately sentimental. The art is cartoony-cute and populated by suitably loving critters on solid backgrounds. Hearts accent each scene, but the theme of the project is never in any doubt.

Perfect for Valentine’s Day, but the syrupy sweetness will cloy after the holiday. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-7282-2095-6

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Sourcebooks Wonderland

Review Posted Online: Jan. 27, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2021

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A comical, fresh look at crayons and color

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Duncan wants to draw, but instead of crayons, he finds a stack of letters listing the crayons’ demands in this humorous tale.

Red is overworked, laboring even on holidays. Gray is exhausted from coloring expansive spaces (elephants, rhinos and whales). Black wants to be considered a color-in color, and Peach? He’s naked without his wrapper! This anthropomorphized lot amicably requests workplace changes in hand-lettered writing, explaining their work stoppage to a surprised Duncan. Some are tired, others underutilized, while a few want official titles. With a little creativity and a lot of color, Duncan saves the day. Jeffers delivers energetic and playful illustrations, done in pencil, paint and crayon. The drawings are loose and lively, and with few lines, he makes his characters effectively emote. Clever spreads, such as Duncan’s “white cat in the snow” perfectly capture the crayons’ conundrum, and photographic representations of both the letters and coloring pages offer another layer of texture, lending to the tale’s overall believability.

A comical, fresh look at crayons and color . (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: June 27, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-399-25537-3

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: April 15, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2013

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