There’s more puppetry than poetry in this slight but entertaining underwater adventure.
Little Fish is a colorful finger-puppet character who comes to life with a little help from the reader. The animated protagonist swims through the cover scene and seven double-page spreads of bright and simply rendered underwater scenes via a series of die-cut holes in the pages of the book. The rhymed text provides exposition if not much plot: “Hello! I am Little Fish, swimming in the sea. I love to splash and splish. Come and play with me.” The brightly hued finger puppet projects beyond the cover of the book and protrudes through each scenario within, as the cloth tube that invites fingertips to animate Little Fish is thick and stiff, resisting collapse. An odd consequence of that is that it seems to limit the finger puppet’s range of motion. Little Fish can be moved side to side or vertically, up and down, but as the puppet doesn’t collapse, it can’t swim out through the die-cut holes, nor explore in many different directions, either. The cartoonish artwork is appealing; Little Fish’s undersea friends swim against a deep blue background punctuated by occasional bubbles or underwater plants. The book ends happily, with a tribute to Mom, “the one,” Little Fish admits, “I love the best.”
Fun if not profound. (Board book. 1-3)