Another pleasant outing with Lois and Bob

LOIS LOOKS FOR BOB AT THE BEACH

Uncluttered illustrations in muted shades set a beachy tone for Lois and Bob’s third outing.

Following the pattern established in Lois Looks for Bob at Home and Lois Looks for Bob at the Park (both 2018), Lois, a big-eyed tuxedo cat, looks behind a bucket, a rock, a beach bag, a sailboat, and an ice cream cone before finding Bob the bird behind a beach ball. Lois is always on the left-hand page; the large, die-cut gatefold flap is on the right. A hint of what might be hidden behind each flap is visible. On the final spread, Lois is also behind the beach ball, having found her friend. Where the gatefold is hinged changes on each spread. While this adds to the guesswork, it also presents a challenge for youngsters just learning how to manipulate pages and suggests an audience with some degree of small-motor skills. The flaps are also thinner than the board pages and may tear when pulled by strong little hands. As in the earlier titles, each hidden animal is greeted by a proper name (the sea gull is Geoffrey, the sea turtle is Maureen, etc.) rather than the name of the species. Most adult readers will automatically supply that missing information. A follow-up question printed on the inside of each flap (“Aren’t his feet a lovely color?”) invites further adult/child interaction.

Another pleasant outing with Lois and Bob . (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: June 4, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5362-0588-6

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Nosy Crow/Candlewick

Review Posted Online: March 31, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2019

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Specific visuals ground this sweet celebration of simple pleasures.

MY HEART FILLS WITH HAPPINESS

Black-haired, brown-skinned children describe many sources of happiness in this board book, dedicated by the author to “former Indian Residential School students.”

“My heart fills with happiness when… / I see the face of someone I love // I smell bannock baking in the oven / I sing.” Author Smith, who is Cree, Lakota, and Scottish-Canadian, infuses her simple text with the occasional detail that bespeaks her First Nations heritage even as she celebrates universal pleasures. In addition to the smell of bannock, the narrator delights in dancing, listening to stories, and drumming. Cree-Métis artist Flett introduces visual details that further underscore this heritage, as in the moccasins, shawl, and braids worn by the dancing child and the drum and drumsticks wielded by the adult and toddler who lovingly make music together. (The “I drum” spread is repeated immediately, possibly to emphasize its importance, a detail that may disorient readers expecting a different scene.) Although the narrative voice is consistent, the children depicted change, which readers will note by hairstyle, dress, and relative age. The bannock bakes in a modern kitchen, and most of the clothing is likewise Western, emphasizing that these Native Americans are contemporary children. There is nothing in the text that specifically identifies them by nation, however.

Specific visuals ground this sweet celebration of simple pleasures. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: March 1, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4598-0957-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Orca

Review Posted Online: June 22, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2016

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This will have readers putting on their dancing shoes to do the “cha cha cha” with their dino-babies

DINOSAUR DANCE!

It's not the first time dinosaurs have been featured in a clever Boynton board book. It seems she—and we—can't get enough.

As her fans know, Boynton has a sly wit that respects the intelligence of her young fans and amuses the adults asked to “read it again.” In this book she introduces nine dinosaurs, each of which dances in a way that seems totally appropriate for that particular species. “The blue Stegosaurus goes SHIMMY SHIMMY SHAKE. / The red Brontosaurus goes QUIVERY QUAKE.” Drawing on her experience as a children’s musician, she writes a text that trips along like a song with rhymes that make sense but don't intrude. The illustrations, typical Boynton, reflect her greeting-card background. They are cartoonish but manage to capture the unique personality of each creature. The unnamed dinosaur narrator looks genuinely distraught at not being able to name the “tiny little dino” that “goes DEEDLY DEE.” Spoiler alert: the tiny little dinosaur is probably Compsognathus and would be about the size of a small chicken. Young dinophiles would be impressed if the dinosaurologists in their lives could supply that factoid, but alas, they will have to look it up.

This will have readers putting on their dancing shoes to do the “cha cha cha” with their dino-babies . (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 30, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4814-8099-4

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Oct. 12, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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