Tiny Mouse and her small adventure are a most welcome addition to the board-book shelf.

READ REVIEW

A SURPRISE FOR TINY MOUSE

Tiny Mouse likes all kinds of weather, except for “splashy rain.”

“Tiny Mouse loves nibbling wheat in the sunshine,” and she also enjoys watching the wind-blown leaves. “She likes the crunchy frost on a cold night” and the snowflakes that land on her nose. The delightful mixed-media illustrations are further enhanced by a variety of die-cuts throughout that will have babies wanting to touch. On the first two-page spread, the upper right corner follows the contours of Tiny Mouse, and on the verso, these are the contours of the dried leaves. As Tiny Mouse crunches on the frost on a cold night, a die-cut circle outlines an equally frosty-looking moon, which becomes snow on the next page. But when the weather turns wet, Tiny Mouse is encouraged to run into her hole and hide, and the hole is right there waiting for her. The real surprise in the book comes at the end, when Tiny Mouse’s nose peeks out of her hole to find the sun has come out and made a “lovely rainbow.” The rainbow is an embedded wheel sturdy enough to last through many a spin. The baby-friendly text is rich in vocabulary: “nibbling,” “crackly,” “crunchy,” “tickle,” “splashy,” lovely”—all words that babies will easily understand by the context.

Tiny Mouse and her small adventure are a most welcome addition to the board-book shelf. (Board book. 6 mos.-3)

Pub Date: Sept. 8, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-7636-7967-5

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Aug. 5, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2016

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Beloved Little Blue takes a bit of the mystery—and fear—out of Halloween costumes.

LITTLE BLUE TRUCK'S HALLOWEEN

A lift-the-flap book gives the littlest trick-or-treaters some practice identifying partygoers under their costumes.

Little Blue Truck and his buddy Toad are off to a party, and they invite readers (and a black cat) along for the ride: “ ‘Beep! Beep! Beep!’ / says Little Blue. / ‘It’s Halloween!’ / You come, too.” As they drive, they are surprised (and joined) by many of their friends in costume. “Who’s that in a tutu / striking a pose / up on the tiniest / tips of her toes? / Under the mask / who do you see?” Lifting the flap unmasks a friend: “ ‘Quack!’ says the duck. / ‘It’s me! It’s me!’ ” The sheep is disguised as a clown, the cow’s a queen, the pig’s a witch, the hen and her chick are pirates, and the horse is a dragon. Not to be left out, Little Blue has a costume, too. The flaps are large and sturdy, and enough of the animals’ characteristic features are visible under and around the costumes that little ones will be able to make successful guesses even on the first reading. Lovely curvy shapes and autumn colors fade to dusky blues as night falls, and children are sure to notice the traditional elements of a Halloween party: apple bobbing, lit jack-o’-lanterns, and punch and treats.

Beloved Little Blue takes a bit of the mystery—and fear—out of Halloween costumes. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-544-77253-3

Page Count: 16

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: July 20, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2016

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THE WONKY DONKEY

The print version of a knee-slapping cumulative ditty.

In the song, Smith meets a donkey on the road. It is three-legged, and so a “wonky donkey” that, on further examination, has but one eye and so is a “winky wonky donkey” with a taste for country music and therefore a “honky-tonky winky wonky donkey,” and so on to a final characterization as a “spunky hanky-panky cranky stinky-dinky lanky honky-tonky winky wonky donkey.” A free musical recording (of this version, anyway—the author’s website hints at an adults-only version of the song) is available from the publisher and elsewhere online. Even though the book has no included soundtrack, the sly, high-spirited, eye patch–sporting donkey that grins, winks, farts, and clumps its way through the song on a prosthetic metal hoof in Cowley’s informal watercolors supplies comical visual flourishes for the silly wordplay. Look for ready guffaws from young audiences, whether read or sung, though those attuned to disability stereotypes may find themselves wincing instead or as well.

Hee haw. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: May 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-545-26124-1

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Dec. 29, 2018

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