ALL FOR THE NEWBORN BABY

To go with reverent, lovely manger scenes, Root draws images from several Christmas carols and songs for a tender lullaby in which birds, livestock, a spider, even a cherry tree attend on the holy infant. “Fireflies / Like tiny candles / Light the stable / Where you sleep. / Little fishes / In the river / Flash and splash / And laugh and leap.” The pages are designed to resemble those of late-Medieval illuminated manuscripts; rows of exactly rendered, finely detailed specimens of moths and butterflies, berries and wildflowers, are placed beneath views of a drowsily cheerful Jesus (not quite newborn, but nearly so), with Mary, Joseph, and a variety of animals gathered ’round. All are framed by wooden beams and placed within wide, stone-textured borders. Similar frames enclose the blocks of rhymed, short-lined text. Like Norma Farber’s All Those Mothers at the Manger (1985), there is no music to go with the lyric, but read aloud, the verse has a gently soporific rhythm—and the art is virtuoso work. Exquisite. (Picture book/poetry. 1-3)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2000

ISBN: 0-7636-0093-8

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2000

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While Taro Gomi did this gimmick first and better (Peekaboo, 2013, in English; 1990 in Japan), this is a welcome addition to...

THE EYES GAME

From the Let's Play Games! series

Tullet’s latest interactive creation turns an open book into a game of peekaboo.

With an almond-shaped die-cut eye hole punched through each page, a mask for readers to wear is created across the double-page spread. Little ones and their grown-ups can don two human (both Caucasian) masks, as well as one cat, one robot and three aliens (or are they monsters?). Tullet’s bold colors are present here in his graphically simple and playful cartoons rendered with thick black lines. The minimal text consists of an appropriate greeting from the character in question (“Hello!” “Hey!” “Miiiiiow!”) and a simple, first-person one-liner for the mask wearer to repeat. The choking-hazard warnings that have plagued many of Tullet’s other board-book offerings are absent, a welcome change. As many toddlers can be wary of masks, parents and caregivers should take pains to share this title with sensitivity.

While Taro Gomi did this gimmick first and better (Peekaboo, 2013, in English; 1990 in Japan), this is a welcome addition to the growing number of board books that go masked. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Feb. 3, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-7148-6689-5

Page Count: 14

Publisher: Phaidon

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2014

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GETTING READY

Readers are invited to follow a morning routine, from getting up all the way to leaving the house.

On the cover a pair of human feet look ready to go into a pair of shiny red boots, but as readers open the book it will not be clear if the main character is human or of the teddy-bear variety. Regardless, this touch-and-feel book starts off by having readers touch the soft furry Teddy. This is just the beginning of a series of confusing discrepancies between text and illustrations. The book seems to ask children to help the main character perform a series of activities, such as getting dressed, holding the handles of a sippy cup, brushing teeth, or pushing and pulling the shiny red boots on. Yet in reality all readers can do is touch and feel the different textures. The only true interactivity is pulling the bed covers back, zipping up a jacket, and opening the door at the end of the book. It is doubtful children will find the zipper easy to operate. An easy-to-miss trail of raised dots starts at the bed and runs along every page until it ends at the beginning of a glittery yellow path on the other side of the front door.

Misses the mark. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: May 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-84643-886-8

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Child's Play

Review Posted Online: April 17, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2017

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