Next book


A quirky and quiet pastoral tale that offers instruction to young children on independence and decision-making.

An indecisive child finds their way.

Clover, who lives on a farm, has dark hair and pale skin and, like their many brothers and sisters, wears overalls and a stocking cap. As usual, Clover can’t figure out what to do—will it be mushroom picking or mussel collecting? At last, the appealing protagonist follows their family to a nearby river, where they see a young goat that has wandered from the farm into the woods. Clover follows the goat to bring it home; unsure of which path to take, the child asks a tree, a stream, and the wind for advice but receives no answers. Lush, finely detailed ink and watercolor artwork forms the basis of this gently suspenseful story. While Clover searches for the goat, their siblings search for her, the somewhat treacly lesson being that “listening when our heart speaks will always lead us where we need to go.” It’s difficult to tell whether the odd formality of this French import comes from the original text or the translation, though it does work with the illustrations to conjure up a dreamlike, bygone era with hints of the magic of the natural world. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A quirky and quiet pastoral tale that offers instruction to young children on independence and decision-making. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 13, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-990252-14-3

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Milky Way Picture Books

Review Posted Online: May 24, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2022

Next book


Echoes of Runaway Bunny color this exchange between a bath-averse piglet and his patient mother. Using a strategy that would probably be a nonstarter in real life, the mother deflects her stubborn offspring’s string of bath-free occupational conceits with appeals to reason: “Pirates NEVER EVER take baths!” “Pirates don’t get seasick either. But you do.” “Yeesh. I’m an astronaut, okay?” “Well, it is hard to bathe in zero gravity. It’s hard to poop and pee in zero gravity too!” And so on, until Mom’s enticing promise of treasure in the deep sea persuades her little Treasure Hunter to take a dive. Chunky figures surrounded by lots of bright white space in Segal’s minimally detailed watercolors keep the visuals as simple as the plotline. The language isn’t quite as basic, though, and as it rendered entirely in dialogue—Mother Pig’s lines are italicized—adult readers will have to work hard at their vocal characterizations for it to make any sense. Moreover, younger audiences (any audiences, come to that) may wonder what the piggy’s watery closing “EUREKA!!!” is all about too. Not particularly persuasive, but this might coax a few young porkers to get their trotters into the tub. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: March 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-399-25425-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: Jan. 25, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2011

Next book


A real treasure of a book for any child who has struggled to learn a skill.

A young Black boy struggles with writing—until a special guest visits his class.

Abdul loves to tell stories about the people in his neighborhood, and his friends at school love hearing them. But whenever he tries to write down his stories in a notebook, spelling rules confuse him, and his “scribbly, scratchy, scrawly letters” never stay on the lines. Abdul decides that his stories are not for books. One day, a visitor comes to Abdul’s class; Mr. Muhammad—a Black man with a flattop haircut like Abdul’s and whose sneakers, like Abdul’s, have “not a single crease or scuff”—is a writer who urges the students to “write new stories with new superheroes.” Abdul feels motivated to give writing another shot, but again he ends up with endless erasure marks and smudges. Mr. Muhammad shows Abdul his own messy notebook, and Abdul, who is left-handed, decides to try writing without erasing. He makes a mess but searches through the clutter for sentences he loves. He rewrites and rewrites and works on his mistakes until he forms a story he likes, proudly claiming the title of writer. Bright, full-color, textured digital illustrations depict a racially diverse, joyful community. This story offers an honest portrayal of learning differences and demonstrates the importance of role models who reflect kids’ own backgrounds. It is a lovely addition to the shelf of meaningful children’s books portraying Black Muslim Americans in everyday situations. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A real treasure of a book for any child who has struggled to learn a skill. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: March 29, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-5344-6298-4

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Salaam Reads/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: March 1, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2022

Close Quickview