Teachers, make sure this is on your shelves—it’s a great read-aloud, an easy read for beginning readers, and a model for...

I HEAR A PICKLE

AND SMELL, SEE, TOUCH, & TASTE IT, TOO!

Only the last page features the titular pickle—the rest of the book is a tribute to the five senses that will resonate with young readers.

Highlighting sensory experiences that will be familiar to the majority of readers, Isadora focuses on one sense at a time, progressing from hearing to smelling, seeing, touching, and tasting (readers can track their progress with a list in the upper right of each spread); she devotes three spreads to all but taste, which gets only two. An ethnically diverse group of young children tell readers what they sense—or don’t—in simple declarative sentences that are sometimes embellished by the kids’ thoughts: “I don’t smell. I have a cold.” “I don’t see the words in my book. / I wear my glasses. I see the words!” “I touch the egg. Oops!” While one girl enjoys PB&J, another says, “I taste a jelly sandwich. I’m allergic to peanuts.” Isadora’s ink-and-watercolor artwork uses vignettes and white backgrounds to bring each sense to the forefront, and children of most skin and hair colors will find at least one face like their own in these pages (glasses are the only depicted disability, however).

Teachers, make sure this is on your shelves—it’s a great read-aloud, an easy read for beginning readers, and a model for student books. (Picture/concept book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Jan. 12, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-399-16049-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Nancy Paulsen Books

Review Posted Online: Oct. 6, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2015

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A cozy read for bibliophiles.

SNOWMAN'S STORY

With echoes of “Frosty the Snowman” in the background, a snowman’s storybook within this wordless book delivers a comic wintertime romp.

Woodland creatures build a snowman, giving him a green book as a finishing touch. This addition comes right after a windswept top hat lands on his head, vivifying him à la Frosty. Hidden inside is a rabbit (it is a magic hat, after all); attentive readers will have seen the hat first on frontmatter pages and then with the bunny in the double-page spreads before the early ones devoted to the snowman’s construction. The snowman reads his book aloud to the animals, with the rabbit surreptitiously listening in, its ears poking out of the top of the hat. When the others all drift off to sleep, the bunny emerges and steals away with the book. A chase ensues across snowy terrain and through a series of pages (perhaps a few too many for good pacing) replete with comic-style panels. When the animals and snowman confront the rabbit in its tree-hollow home, its motivation for book thievery is revealed: This bunny has a family and wishes to share the story with its children. All’s well that ends well, and the animals convene (safely outside and away from the rabbit family’s crackling fireplace) to read together.

A cozy read for bibliophiles. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Nov. 18, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-4778-4787-9

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Two Lions

Review Posted Online: Oct. 6, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2014

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PIRATES DON'T TAKE BATHS

Echoes of Runaway Bunny color this exchange between a bath-averse piglet and his patient mother. Using a strategy that would probably be a nonstarter in real life, the mother deflects her stubborn offspring’s string of bath-free occupational conceits with appeals to reason: “Pirates NEVER EVER take baths!” “Pirates don’t get seasick either. But you do.” “Yeesh. I’m an astronaut, okay?” “Well, it is hard to bathe in zero gravity. It’s hard to poop and pee in zero gravity too!” And so on, until Mom’s enticing promise of treasure in the deep sea persuades her little Treasure Hunter to take a dive. Chunky figures surrounded by lots of bright white space in Segal’s minimally detailed watercolors keep the visuals as simple as the plotline. The language isn’t quite as basic, though, and as it rendered entirely in dialogue—Mother Pig’s lines are italicized—adult readers will have to work hard at their vocal characterizations for it to make any sense. Moreover, younger audiences (any audiences, come to that) may wonder what the piggy’s watery closing “EUREKA!!!” is all about too. Not particularly persuasive, but this might coax a few young porkers to get their trotters into the tub. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: March 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-399-25425-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: Jan. 26, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2011

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