High educational value offsets limited literary merit.



From the Bright Start Right Start series

Child-friendly examples teach toddlers socio-emotional skills.

In this Bright Start series entry, a grandfather teaches the narrator, a gender-ambiguous child, to ride the blue scooter they got for their birthday. In the process of trying, falling, and trying again, the child learns a lesson in perseverance. In companion title My Turn, Your Turn, Ms. Wright, who is presumably a teacher, helps Malik and Cora share a toy airplane that they were fighting over. Both books feature duotone cartoon illustrations that include characters of color: Grandpa and the narrator in One More Time are black while in My Turn, Your Turn, Malik is dark skinned, and light-skinned Cora is ethnically ambiguous. Textured, chunky pages will appeal to small, curious hands. Laudably, the narratives use examples that children will find both familiar and relevant. While the predictability of the storylines will appeal to young readers, the stories verge on the monotonous. In One More Time, for example, the author spends seven pages detailing how the protagonist learns to balance, then push, then balance and push, a description that feels tedious and does not contribute to the narrative. That said, the limited page length and simple language make these books ideal for teachers or parents looking for quick and easy tools to use to foster socio-emotional development.

High educational value offsets limited literary merit. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Sept. 17, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-7112-4441-2

Page Count: 10

Publisher: Words & Pictures

Review Posted Online: Nov. 24, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2019

Did you like this book?

This TV rerun in board-book form has nothing new to offer.


From the Peppa Pig series

Peppa hopes to join her classmates in a Halloween pumpkin competition in this adaptation of a story from the popular British television program Peppa Pig.

With the help of Granny and Grandpa Pig, Peppa turns her giant pumpkin, which is the size of a compact car, into a jack-o’-lantern. The trio is flummoxed when it comes time to transport the pumpkin to the competition, so they call on Miss Rabbit and her helicopter to airlift the pumpkin to the festivities as Peppa and her grandparents ride inside. Peppa arrives just in time for the contest and wins the prize for best flying pumpkin. The scenes look as if they are pulled directly from the television show, right down to the rectangular framing of some of the scenes. While the story is literally nothing new, the text is serviceable, describing the action in two to three sentences per page. The pumpkin-shaped book and orange foil cover will likely attract youngsters, whether they are Peppa fans or not.

This TV rerun in board-book form has nothing new to offer. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 30, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-33922-2

Page Count: 10

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Sept. 24, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2019

Did you like this book?

A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an...


A little boy exults in his new role as big brother.

Rhyming text describes the arrival of a new baby and all of the big brother’s rewarding new duties. He gets to help with feedings, diaper changes, playtime, bathtime, and naptime. Though the rhyming couplets can sometimes feel a bit forced and awkward, the sentiment is sweet, as the focus here never veers from the excitement and love a little boy feels for his tiny new sibling. The charming, uncluttered illustrations convincingly depict the growing bond between this fair-skinned, rosy-cheeked, smiling pair of boys. In the final pages, the parents, heretofore kept mostly out of view, are pictured holding the children. The accompanying text reads: “Mommy, Daddy, baby, me. / We love each other—a family!” In companion volume I Am a Big Sister, the little boy is replaced with a little girl with bows in her hair. Some of the colors and patterns in the illustrations are slightly altered, but it is essentially the same title.

A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an older sibling can do to help. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Jan. 27, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-545-68886-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: March 17, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2015

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet