Despite uneven illustrations, this is likely to be a storytime or bedtime hit.



A careless turtle must use his wits to avoid being eaten in this picture-book fable by Rivette (Popcorn Memories, 2014) and debut illustrator Moegelvang.

Tucker Turtle decides to take off his shell for a swim. The colored-pencil illustrations show the carefree turtle doing the backstroke and blowing a geyser of water from his mouth. Afterward, Tucker decides to sun himself under a tree and promptly falls asleep. Freddie Fox shows up and sees the turtle as a potential meal. Luckily, his shadow falls across Tucker, waking the turtle and giving him just enough time to come up with an outrageous lie: He’d taste better, he says, if he was wearing his flavorful, nutritious magic shell. After Tucker puts it back on, Freddie tries to eat him, without success. Eventually, the disgruntled fox lets Tucker go, and the turtle resolves never to take off his carapace again. The story’s vocabulary is simple and approachable, and the light tone makes sure that children will never be worried about Tucker’s fate. They’ll be amused by watching him scramble to fool the fox, especially if they’re already familiar with traditional trickster tales. Moegelvang’s Disney-like character design is pleasing, but the images’ poor production quality offers smudged-looking resolution.

Despite uneven illustrations, this is likely to be a storytime or bedtime hit.

Pub Date: Sept. 8, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5434-4913-6

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Xlibris

Review Posted Online: Aug. 14, 2018

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A sweet, soft conversation starter and a charming gift.

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A paean to teachers and their surrogates everywhere.

This gentle ode to a teacher’s skill at inspiring, encouraging, and being a role model is spoken, presumably, from a child’s viewpoint. However, the voice could equally be that of an adult, because who can’t look back upon teachers or other early mentors who gave of themselves and offered their pupils so much? Indeed, some of the self-aware, self-assured expressions herein seem perhaps more realistic as uttered from one who’s already grown. Alternatively, readers won’t fail to note that this small book, illustrated with gentle soy-ink drawings and featuring an adult-child bear duo engaged in various sedentary and lively pursuits, could just as easily be about human parent- (or grandparent-) child pairs: some of the softly colored illustrations depict scenarios that are more likely to occur within a home and/or other family-oriented setting. Makes sense: aren’t parents and other close family members children’s first teachers? This duality suggests that the book might be best shared one-on-one between a nostalgic adult and a child who’s developed some self-confidence, having learned a thing or two from a parent, grandparent, older relative, or classroom instructor.

A sweet, soft conversation starter and a charming gift. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: March 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-943200-08-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Compendium

Review Posted Online: Dec. 14, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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The greening of Dr. Seuss, in an ecology fable with an obvious message but a savingly silly style. In the desolate land of the Lifted Lorax, an aged creature called the Once-ler tells a young visitor how he arrived long ago in the then glorious country and began manufacturing anomalous objects called Thneeds from "the bright-colored tufts of the Truffula Trees." Despite protests from the Lorax, a native "who speaks for the trees," he continues to chop down Truffulas until he drives away the Brown Bar-ba-loots who had fed on the Tuffula fruit, the Swomee-Swans who can't sing a note for the smogulous smoke, and the Humming-Fish who had hummed in the pond now glumped up with Gluppity-Glupp. As for the Once-let, "1 went right on biggering, selling more Thneeds./ And I biggered my money, which everyone needs" — until the last Truffula falls. But one seed is left, and the Once-let hands it to his listener, with a message from the Lorax: "UNLESS someone like you/ cares a whole awful lot,/ nothing is going to get better./ It's not." The spontaneous madness of the old Dr. Seuss is absent here, but so is the boredom he often induced (in parents, anyway) with one ridiculous invention after another. And if the Once-let doesn't match the Grinch for sheer irresistible cussedness, he is stealing a lot more than Christmas and his story just might induce a generation of six-year-olds to care a whole lot.

Pub Date: Aug. 12, 1971

ISBN: 0394823370

Page Count: 72

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Oct. 19, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1971

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