Next book


This sweet celebration of friendship is elevated by its winsome illustrations. (Picture book. 4-7)

A little mouse finds a friend in this rhyming picture book.

Little Mouseling, the youngest of many, is very small, and her many brothers and sisters often just don’t wait for her. When she pops out from under the tree where her family lives, many respond to her plea for someone to “stay by [her] side.” Unfortunately, Toad Flip likes the water (she doesn’t), and Big Squirrel Brown wants to climb (she doesn’t). Her sad tears, however, bring “a tinyful, weenimous, little black vole” to her side. They find much in common and much to share: “all the things / you can do as a two!” Gliori has created a fanciful wood of little animals that sometimes only vaguely resemble their actual counterparts; all have big eyes and lively expressions. She uses curlicues of plants, trees and tails to show movement and pattern—and joy. Mouseling’s ladybug pull-toy is a stroke of brilliance; the little black vole’s scene of singing and dancing, with his mouth open operatically wide and waving two maple helicopters in the air like banners, is another. The text is rhymed, not always felicitously, but the language is pleasing. The penultimate spread of paired-off buddies—rabbits and foxes and owls and insects—is an affectionate paean to BFFs and/or couples.

This sweet celebration of friendship is elevated by its winsome illustrations. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: April 28, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-545-81326-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Feb. 2, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2015

Next book


While this is a fairly bland treatment compared to Deborah Lee Rose and Carey Armstrong-Ellis’ The Twelve Days of...

Rabe follows a young girl through her first 12 days of kindergarten in this book based on the familiar Christmas carol.

The typical firsts of school are here: riding the bus, making friends, sliding on the playground slide, counting, sorting shapes, laughing at lunch, painting, singing, reading, running, jumping rope, and going on a field trip. While the days are given ordinal numbers, the song skips the cardinal numbers in the verses, and the rhythm is sometimes off: “On the second day of kindergarten / I thought it was so cool / making lots of friends / and riding the bus to my school!” The narrator is a white brunette who wears either a tunic or a dress each day, making her pretty easy to differentiate from her classmates, a nice mix in terms of race; two students even sport glasses. The children in the ink, paint, and collage digital spreads show a variety of emotions, but most are happy to be at school, and the surroundings will be familiar to those who have made an orientation visit to their own schools.

While this is a fairly bland treatment compared to Deborah Lee Rose and Carey Armstrong-Ellis’ The Twelve Days of Kindergarten (2003), it basically gets the job done. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: June 21, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-06-234834-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 3, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2016

Next book


From the Growing With Buddy series , Vol. 3

Making friends isn’t always this easy and convenient.

How do you make a new friend when an old one moves away?

Buddy (from Sorry, Grown-Ups, You Can’t Go to School, 2019, etc.) is feeling lonely. His best friend just moved across town. To make matters worse, there is a field trip coming up, and Buddy needs a bus partner. His sister, Lady, has some helpful advice for making a new pal: “You just need to find something you have in common.” Buddy loves the game Robo Chargers and karate. Surely there is someone else who does, too! Unfortunately, there isn’t. However, when a new student arrives (one day later) and asks everyone to call her Sunny instead of Alison, Buddy gets excited. No one uses his given name, either; they just call him Buddy. He secretly whispers his “real, official name” to Sunny at lunch—an indication that a true friendship is being formed. The rest of the story plods merrily along, all pieces falling exactly into place (she even likes Robo Chargers!), accompanied by Bowers’ digital art, a mix of spot art and full-bleed illustrations. Friendship-building can be an emotionally charged event in a child’s life—young readers will certainly see themselves in Buddy’s plight—but, alas, there is not much storytelling magic to be found. Buddy and his family are White, Sunny and Mr. Teacher are Black, and Buddy’s other classmates are racially diverse. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Making friends isn’t always this easy and convenient. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: July 12, 2022

ISBN: 978-0-593-30709-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: March 29, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2022

Close Quickview