A sweet addition to the toddler bookshelf.

READ REVIEW

SPLISH, SPLASH, DUCKY!

Ducky Duckling finds all the activities it can do in the rain make it happy.

In her signature style of cheery, vibrantly colored illustrations outlined in black, Cousins introduces a new character to her repertoire in the form of bright yellow Ducky Duckling. Readers soon find out that when Ducky Duckling feels happy it says (in bold, display type), “Quack, quack, quack!” And that is exactly what the happy little duckling says at the end of every double-page spread. “Oh, goody, hooray! / It’s raining today. / I’m going to find / my friends to play. / Quack, quack, quack!” In rhyming text accompanied by eye-catching illustrations, readers will find Ducky hopping with a frog, squirming with a worm, hugging a bug and a slug, playing with swans, shaking feathers in the rainy weather, and otherwise just having fun in the rain. Readers will observe what Ducky does not: that the raindrops decrease in number spread by spread. Then: “Oh, no! / The rain has stopped. / No more drips. / No more drops.” As Ducky feels sad and goes in search of Dad, the mallard male encourages Ducky to follow the lead of the butterflies and have fun “We’ll quack together / whatever the weather. / Hop on my back and… / QUACK, QUACK, QUACK!

A sweet addition to the toddler bookshelf. (Picture book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Feb. 13, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-7636-9844-7

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2017

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This TV rerun in board-book form has nothing new to offer.

PEPPA'S GIANT PUMPKIN

From the Peppa Pig series

Peppa hopes to join her classmates in a Halloween pumpkin competition in this adaptation of a story from the popular British television program Peppa Pig.

With the help of Granny and Grandpa Pig, Peppa turns her giant pumpkin, which is the size of a compact car, into a jack-o’-lantern. The trio is flummoxed when it comes time to transport the pumpkin to the competition, so they call on Miss Rabbit and her helicopter to airlift the pumpkin to the festivities as Peppa and her grandparents ride inside. Peppa arrives just in time for the contest and wins the prize for best flying pumpkin. The scenes look as if they are pulled directly from the television show, right down to the rectangular framing of some of the scenes. While the story is literally nothing new, the text is serviceable, describing the action in two to three sentences per page. The pumpkin-shaped book and orange foil cover will likely attract youngsters, whether they are Peppa fans or not.

This TV rerun in board-book form has nothing new to offer. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 30, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-33922-2

Page Count: 10

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Sept. 24, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2019

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Fun format; bland text.

LOVEBLOCK

From the Block Books series

A hefty board book filled with ruminations on the nature of love.

While love is the topic of this board book, it’s the inventive gatefolds and charmingly vintage illustrations that readers will fall for. Brimming with sweeping declarations along the lines of “Love is / strong. // You have my back and I’ll always have yours,” the text sounds like a series of greeting cards strung together. It’s benign enough, but are most toddlers interested in generic proclamations about love? Some statements, like the ones on “unsinkable” hippos or a panda parent holding a cub “steady,” could introduce new vocabulary. At least there’s plenty of winsome critters to fawn over as the surprisingly sturdy flaps tell dramatic little ministories for each cartoon-style animal species. A downcast baby giraffe looks longingly up at a too-high tasty branch; lift a flap to bring an adult giraffe—and the delicacy—down to the baby, or watch an adventurous young fox retreat into a fold-down–flap burrow to learn that “my heart will always be home with you.” At points, the pages are tricky to turn in the correct order, but clever touches, like a series of folds that slow readers down to a sloth’s speed, make up for it. The book concludes with a gatefold revealing a vibrant playground populated with racially and ethnically diverse humans; two are wheelchair users.

Fun format; bland text. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-4197-3153-2

Page Count: 84

Publisher: abramsappleseed

Review Posted Online: Dec. 25, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2021

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