THE BIG TIDY-UP

A little girl’s messy bedroom forms the basis of this amusing tale, originally published as a Golden Book in 1970. This new edition uses a larger format that shows off the cluttered state of little Jennifer’s room in grand style, with clothes on the floor, cherry pie under the pillow and her cat curled up in an open dresser drawer. The bouncy, rhyming text details Jennifer’s messy habits, filling the story with humor. After Jen’s mom posts a “Keep Out” sign on the door, Jennifer spends two or three days wallowing in her mess before deciding to clean up her act. Gray’s illustrations of Jennifer’s pink room are packed with the little girl’s favorite toys and brightly patterned clothes, and the child herself, pictured with a bristly thatch of black hair, has a spunky charm. Though the story is an older one, that messy-room problem is still very much a current event. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: May 13, 2008

ISBN: 978-0-375-84821-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Golden Books/Random

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2008

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LOLA LOVES STORIES

From the Lola & Leo series

Lola’s daddy takes her to the library every Saturday, where she finds “excellent books,” and every night her mommy or daddy reads them to her. The next day Lola acts out the story. On Sunday she’s a fairy princess; on Monday she takes her toy animals “on fantastic trips to places like Paris”; on Wednesday she’s a tiger, etc. Each new book and day provides Lola with a variety of tales to play out, with the last one—which is about a wild monster—posing the question, “What will Lola be tomorrow?” The final page shows her in a wolf suit just like Max’s. The library books, the pretending and the incorporation of the days of the week work together as a simple and pleasing premise. Beardshaw’s acrylic illustrations depict the multicultural kids and Lola’s black family with childlike charm, while the title will have librarians, parents and booksellers smiling. Alert: The book will be an invitation for lap kids to follow Lola’s lead—not such a bad thing. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: July 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-1-58089-258-2

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Charlesbridge

Review Posted Online: June 3, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2010

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JAZZ BABY

A snappy rhyming text celebrates an extended family’s joyous gyrations to the jazz spinning on the turntable. From waking to sleep, Baby’s right in the thick of it, as siblings, grandparents and cousins move and groove: “So they BOOM-BOOM-BOOM / and they HIP-HIP-HOP / and the bouncin’ baby boogies with a BOP-BOP-BOP.” Wheeler’s verse scans beautifully and begs to be read aloud—danced to, even—making this a fine choice for preschool and kindergarten story times. Christie’s bold, double-paged gouache compositions locate this colorfully garbed, expressively hip family within an equally vibrant community. As Baby’s big dark eyes get glassy with fatigue, the party winds down. “Daddy sings blues. / Mama sings sweet. / While that snoozy-woozy baby . . . / . . . sleeps deep, deep, deep.” Exultant and infectious, from the red-and-yellow-striped endpapers to the final “OH YEAH!” (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 2007

ISBN: 978-0-15-202522-9

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2007

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