This traditional Inuit story from Nunavut teaches children the importance of parental guidance—with a dash of excitement.

READ REVIEW

THE OWL AND THE TWO RABBITS

A cautionary tale about rabbit sisters who disobey their parents and find trouble as a result.

Even though their parents told them not to play out in the open tundra, two rabbit sisters climb atop rocks on a hillside. Trying to outdo each other in a jumping game, the rabbits soon see a large white owl land in front of them. Its talons are sharp and its belly grumbling. He grabs the two rabbits and won’t let go even as he is unable to take flight due to the way they squirm and fight. A comical scene follows as the rabbits work together to throw the owl off balance. The owl’s wife coaches her partner from the sky, telling him to let go of one of the rabbit sisters. Luckily for young readers who might be distressed at the thought that the protagonists might be eaten, the owl’s greed is overwhelming, and he will not listen to her advice. By sticking together, and believing in themselves, the rabbit sisters hatch an escape plan and learn an important lesson. The dark nature of the tale is mitigated by the style of illustration: Bright pastel colors cover each page, and the soft features of the owl and pink-eared rabbits alleviate some of the tension in the life-and-death struggle.

This traditional Inuit story from Nunavut teaches children the importance of parental guidance—with a dash of excitement. (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 17, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-77227-236-9

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Inhabit Media

Review Posted Online: June 23, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2019

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A bland also-ran trailing a large litter of like-themed pups.

WOLF PUPS JOIN THE PACK

From the First Discoveries series

A photo album of young wolves running, playing, and growing through their first year.

Light on factual details, the uncredited text largely runs to vague observations along the lines of the fact that “young wolves need to rest every now and then” or that packs “differ in size. Some are large and have many wolves, while others are small with only a few.” The chief draws here are the big, color, stock photos, which show pups of diverse ages and species, singly or in groups—running, posing alertly with parents or other adult wolves, eating (regurgitated food only, and that not visible), howling, patrolling, and snoozing as a seasonal round turns green meadows to snowy landscapes. In a notably perfunctory insertion squeezed onto the final spread, a wildlife biologist from the American Museum of Natural History introduces himself and describes his research work—all with animals other than wolves. Budding naturalists should have no trouble running down more nourishing fare, from Seymour Simon’s Wolves (1993) to Jonathan London’s Seasons of Little Wolf (illustrated by Jon Van Zyle, 2014) and on. Baby Dolphin’s First Swim follows the same formula even down to profiling exactly the same wildlife biologist.

A bland also-ran trailing a large litter of like-themed pups. (Informational picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: June 6, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-4549-2237-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Sterling

Review Posted Online: April 26, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2017

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Good advice and good reading practice rolled into one.

MY FIRST KITTEN

From the My First series

Kitten care presented early-reader style.

“Something soft and furry / Is coming home with me. // It is my new kitten. / She is as sweet as can be!” First-person, easy-reading text describes meeting the kitten, feeding the kitten, playing with the kitten, then taking it to the vet and keeping it safe. The first half of this volume is presented in rhyme with Wachter's photos of real children of various races and their kittens (always the same kitten-and-child pairings) imposed on simple cartoon backgrounds. On other pages, photos of kittens (all cute as the dickens) leaping, scratching, running, and sleeping appear against similar backgrounds. The second half reiterates the same information but in more detail. It passes on instructions in simple language for tasks like introducing a kitten to its litter box and interpreting the sounds and body language of your new furry friend. Jumping the species barrier, Biscuit creator Capucilli does a fine job of instructing young, new pet owners in the care of their wee feline friends in this companion to My First Puppy (2019). This helpful guidebook ends with a message encouraging aspiring young pet friends to adopt from shelters. (This book was reviewed digitally with 9-by-12-inch double-page spreads viewed at 85.7% of actual size.)

Good advice and good reading practice rolled into one. (Early reader. 5-7)

Pub Date: Dec. 8, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-5344-7754-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Simon Spotlight

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2020

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