Next book

PLUMPLY, DUMPLY PUMPKIN

Marbles-in-your-mouth wordplay fun as a tiger cub searches for a prime pumpkin specimen. Set to color-saturated artwork, this piece of simple yet exuberant verse follows Peter as he selects from pumpkins lumpy and bumpy, stumpy and grumpy. And pray, “Not some squat, lopsided pumpkin, / but a glossy lot of pumpkin.” Having scoured the expressionistic and very orange landscapes and located his perfect pumpkin, Peter is tempted to turn the beauty into “Pumpkin pudding? / Pumpkin fry? / Pumpkin salad? / Pumpkin stew? / What is Peter going to do?” What he does is shuffle home with the pumpkin and with the help of his father carve it into a glorious jack-’o-lantern. There is a soothing flow to this story as Peter moves from the hunt for the perfect pumpkin—endowed with the romantic, otherworld qualities of a quest through lambent and surreal scenery, where even the trees look like big, round pumpkins—to that most curious of symbols, the jack-’o-lantern, whose associations can be plumbed to a fare-thee-well. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-689-83834-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: McElderry

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2001

Next book

I WANT A HIPPOPOTAMUS FOR CHRISTMAS

The words to a Christmas song from the 1950s serve as the text for this exploration of a most unusual Christmas gift. An unnamed little girl in pink pajamas is the first-person narrator, explaining in detail why she wants a hippopotamus as her present. Various views of the hippo are shown in a slightly confusing, nonlinear time sequence, but then why would time proceed in a straightforward fashion with a hippo in the house? Santa is shown pushing the hippo through the door, and the following pages show the little girl caring for her hippo, unwrapping it as a Christmas package (a different packaging treatment is shown on the cover), and then flying off with Santa as the hippo pulls the sleigh. Though the little girl and the words to the song are rather ordinary, the lively, lavender hippo in Whatley’s illustrations is a delightful creature, with a big, pink bow on its head and expressive, bulging eyes. (In fact, that hippo deserves a name and a story of its own.) The music and song lyrics are included in the final spread. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2005

ISBN: 0-06-052942-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2005

Next book

HOW TO CATCH A MAMASAURUS

From the How To Catch… series

A syrupy tribute to mothers that may please fans of the series.

Another creature is on the loose.

The long-running series continues its successful formula with this Hallmark card of a book, which features bright illustrations and catchy rhymes. This time, the mythical creature the racially diverse children set out to catch is an absent mom who does it all (lists of descriptors include the words banker, caregiver, nurse, doctor, driver, chef, housekeeper, teacher, entertainer, playmate, laundry service, problem solver, handywoman, cleaner, and alarm clock) but doesn’t seem to have a job outside the home and is inexplicably a dinosaur. As the children prepare gifts and a meal for her, the text becomes an ode to the skills the Mamasaurus possesses (“Day or night she’s always there. / She meets every wish and need”) and values she instills (“Sometimes life can mean hard work,” “kindness matters,” and “what counts is doing your best”). This well-intentioned selection veers into cliche generously sprinkled with saccharine but manages to redeem itself with its appreciation for mothers and all that they may do. Endpapers include a “to” and “from” page framed in a heart, as well as a page where young gift givers or recipients can draw a picture of their Mamasaurus.

A syrupy tribute to mothers that may please fans of the series. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: March 5, 2024

ISBN: 9781728274300

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Sourcebooks Wonderland

Review Posted Online: Dec. 6, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2024

Close Quickview