A novelty book with a clever concept struggles to overcome the challenges of execution.
The zipper on the cover seen through a bright green frog's die-cut mouth raises expectations of delight, but the zipper is too short to fully unzip, making it an unsatisfying complement to the text (“See it shut, then open wide”). Subsequent pages offer a button that fastens a pig’s snout, a duck's Velcro-flap wing, kitty's snappy collar, and mouse tails that tie in a bow; all have similar problems. They are too fragile to stand up to rough handling, too stiff to manipulate easily, and beyond both the skills and patience of the low end of the suggested audience, “Age 3 and up.” The diagrammed directions on each spread are helpful only to adults who already know how to zip, button, or snap. A mouse on the page about tying a bow admits the difficulty, saying “You might need an adult to help you here.” One strong pull of the strings is liable to tear the page. Young children will enjoy mimicking the animal sounds and lifting the duck's wing, but the rest of the book will just be frustrating. Although the pages are thick, the spine is hollow and will likely be quickly damaged.
Some things just can’t be done in a book; a three-dimensional toy with similar fastenings will serve the audience better. (Board book. 3-5)