An entertaining, educational introduction to New York for readers of all ages.

WANDER NEW YORK

FITZ IN THE CITY

From the A Wander Often Wonder Always Book series , Vol. 1

A young fox tours New York City in this rhyming picture book.

Fitz is thrilled to visit New York for the first time. The fox and his mom take a taxi and visit landmarks, including the Statue of Liberty and the Brooklyn Bridge. On their way to the Central Park Zoo, Fitz worries because they missed their subway stop. Luckily, they make it to the Bronx Zoo in time to feed the penguins. Next, they tour famous places like Times Square. Fitz often describes what he sees (“We’re...walking on a lawn—in a giant park with a lake that has boats to ride on”). The sightseeing continues as they wander through museums and visit Grand Central Terminal. Though exhausted from his jam-packed excursion, Fitz can’t wait for his next adventure. This series opener offers a welcoming look at New York. Reese Traves displays clear knowledge of the locales depicted; each page featuring a specific attraction provides “sidebars” with relevant facts. For example, on a page showing the Empire State Building, the supplemental text explains: “This building has 79 elevators…it is one of the most photographed buildings in the world.” This wealth of information makes the book best suited as a kid-friendly travel guide as opposed to a traditional read-aloud. The charming, creative illustrations by Jon Traves, the author’s husband, amplify the text. Readers will appreciate the unique interpretations of city life with fun extras like meticulously detailed maps.

An entertaining, educational introduction to New York for readers of all ages.

Pub Date: Aug. 10, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-73460-210-4

Page Count: 36

Publisher: Good Avenue Books

Review Posted Online: July 15, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2020

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Yes, the Pigeon has to go to school, and so do readers, and this book will surely ease the way.

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  • New York Times Bestseller

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THE PIGEON HAS TO GO TO SCHOOL!

From the Pigeon series

All the typical worries and excuses kids have about school are filtered through Willems’ hysterical, bus-loving Pigeon.

Told mostly in speech balloons, the bird’s monologue will have kids (and their caregivers) in stitches at Pigeon’s excuses. From already knowing everything (except whatever question readers choose to provide in response to “Go ahead—ask me a question. / Any question!”) to fearing learning too much (“My head might pop off”), Pigeon’s imagination has run wild. Readers familiar with Pigeon will recognize the muted, matte backgrounds that show off the bird’s shenanigans so well. As in previous outings, Willems varies the size of the pigeon on the page to help communicate emotion, the bird teeny small on the double-page spread that illustrates the confession that “I’m… / scared.” And Pigeon’s eight-box rant about all the perils of school (“The unknown stresses me out, dude”) is marvelously followed by the realization (complete with lightbulb thought bubble) that school is the place for students to practice, with experts, all those skills they don’t yet have. But it is the ending that is so Willems, so Pigeon, and so perfect. Pigeon’s last question is “Well, HOW am I supposed to get there, anyway!?!” Readers will readily guess both the answer and Pigeon’s reaction.

Yes, the Pigeon has to go to school, and so do readers, and this book will surely ease the way. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: July 2, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-368-04645-9

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Hyperion

Review Posted Online: May 8, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2019

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A terrific choice for the preschool crowd.

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  • New York Times Bestseller

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TIME FOR SCHOOL, LITTLE BLUE TRUCK

Little Blue Truck learns that he can be as important as the big yellow school bus.

Little Blue Truck is driving along the country road early one morning when he and driver friend Toad come across a big, yellow, shiny school bus. The school bus is friendly, and so are her animal passengers, but when Little Blue Truck wishes aloud he could do an important job like hers, the school bus says only a bus of her size and features can do this job. Little Blue Truck continues along, a bit envious, and finds Piggy crying by the side of the road, having missed the bus. Little Blue tells Piggy to climb in and takes a creative path to the school—one the bus couldn’t navigate—and with an adventurous spirit, gets Piggy there right on time. The simple, rhyming text opens the story with a sweet, fresh, old-fashioned tone and continues with effortlessly rhythmical lines throughout. Little Blue is a brave, helpful, and hopeful character young readers will root for. Adults will feel a rush of nostalgia and delight in sharing this story with children as the animated vehicles and animals in innocent, colorful countryside scenes evoke wholesome character traits and values of growth, grit, and self-acceptance. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A terrific choice for the preschool crowd. (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: June 29, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-358-41224-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2021

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