This gimmick is unlikely to outlast the paper it’s wrapped in.

READ REVIEW

CHRISTMAS

From the Baby Face series

A built-in frame allows parents to make this board book a personalized Christmas story.

The final “page” is almost half an inch thick to make space for either a photograph or a cellphone to rest within it; each page preceding has a die-cut hole that displays the selected image. It sounds good in theory, but there are several problems with this gimmick. Many cellphones are larger or thicker than the space allowed; the flap on the back of the book that provides access is fragile and is not likely to last more than one holiday season; and most seriously, when an appropriately sized cellphone is inserted, the book is too heavy for a toddler to handle safely. Allowing a young child to handle a book independently without fear of damage to the book or child is one of the primary purposes of board books. All this might be forgiven if the story and pictures were stunning, but alas, they are not. Rhyming text catalogs standard Christmas icons—a snowman, Santa, elf, and reindeer—with the inserted photo in the center of each image. The pictures, designed to look like a child's drawings, are pleasant enough, but ultimately they are as memorable as last year's holiday cards.

This gimmick is unlikely to outlast the paper it’s wrapped in. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-62370-292-2

Page Count: 10

Publisher: Capstone Young Readers

Review Posted Online: Aug. 5, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2015

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An excellent, rounded effort from a creator who knows how to deliver.

EEK! HALLOWEEN!

The farmyard's chickens experience Halloween.

A round, full moon shines in the sky, and the chickens of Boynton's barnyard are feeling “nervous.” Pumpkins shine “with flickering eyes,” witches and wizards wander the pastures, and one chicken has seen “a mouse of enormous size.” It’s Halloween night, and readers will delight as the chickens huddle together and try to figure out what's going on. All ends well, of course, and in Boynton's trademark silly style. (It’s really quite remarkable how her ranks of white, yellow-beaked chickens evoke rows of candy corn.) At this point parents and children know what they're in for when they pick up a book by the prolific author, and she doesn't disappoint here. The chickens are silly, the pigs are cute, and the coloring and illustrations evoke a warmth that little ones wary of Halloween will appreciate. For children leery of the ghouls and goblins lurking in the holiday's iconography, this is a perfect antidote, emphasizing all the fun Halloween has to offer.

An excellent, rounded effort from a creator who knows how to deliver. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 23, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-7611-9300-5

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Workman

Review Posted Online: Sept. 19, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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LLAMA LLAMA TRICK OR TREAT

From the Llama Llama series

In this board book designed for the littlest llama lovers, adorable-as-ever Llama Llama (Llama Llama Red Pajama, 2005, etc.) gets ready for some Halloween fun.

Dewdney’s characteristic spare, apt rhymes convey a lot of action in effortlessly readable fashion. A charming and simple introduction to Halloween and its associated activities, this title finds little Llama Llama choosing and carving a pumpkin, pouring candy into bowls, picking out a costume and, finally, trick-or-treating. The costume Llama Llama decides to don—pointy teeth and a black mask and cape—is enough to frighten and fool his friends but not readers, who will immediately recognize and smile at the silly little mini-Dracula. With Dewdney’s characters as expressive as ever, young readers will be drawn right into the holiday fun, eagerly anticipating which costume Llama Llama will choose and excited to see him scare his friends and score some candy at trick-or-treat. In the equally appealing companion title, Llama Llama Jingle Bells,the little fellow gets ready for Christmas, baking and decorating some cookies in anticipation of Santa’s arrival. This simple holiday title will win Llama Llama new fans, and old friends will want to add it and its companion to their collections. (Board book. 1-2)

 

Pub Date: Aug. 19, 2014

ISBN: 978-0451469786

Page Count: 14

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: June 25, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2015

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