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by Mem Fox & illustrated by Jan Thomas

Age Range: 2 - 5

Pub Date: Oct. 5th, 2010
ISBN: 978-1-4424-0598-1
Publisher: Beach Lane/Simon & Schuster

The traditional counting format receives a charming update as playfully expressive goats mimic human behavior. While these floppy-eared, flat-nosed animals may play the trumpet or throw a snowball, the lure of hot sandcastles or crunchy umbrella stands prove delicious distractions for the frisky friends. The lilting rhymes nicely capture the building energy. As the growing menagerie frolics across each page, pointed questions encourage audience participation. “Here we see a soccer goat roaring at the ref! / But can we count the CHEERING goats who must be going deaf?” Fox, an early-literacy specialist to the core, gets each rhyme just right, though this hasn't the sublime predictability of her spectacular Where Is the Green Sheep? (illustrated by Judy Horacek, 2004). Thomas’s trademark digital spreads provide punch through chunky, dark outlines and zany off-kilter expressions: The slant of an eyebrow or the turn of an ear--not to mention all those beards--makes for some seriously funny faces. The distinctive Grenadine type, which allows each all-uppercase word to pop dramatically, suits the bold backdrops. These wacky goats guarantee a goofy good time. (Picture book. 2-5)