While it doesn’t do anything truly original, it’s saved by the mirror play and adorable featured babies.

READ REVIEW

BABY SEE, BABY DO

LIFT & LOOK IN THE MIRROR!

This board book features photographs of babies’ faces displaying basic emotions and movements.

From smiling to sad, crawling to stretching, this book covers all of the baby basics. Each two-page spread features the same baby on each side, the verso a wide shot and the recto a close-up headshot in a circular frame. Taking the title seriously, the book’s magnetic, wrap-around cover includes a mirror inside that remains open even while turning pages. Though this feature may be cumbersome for caregivers balancing a bouncing baby and the book at the same time, it capitalizes on babies’ love of self and encourages readers and listeners to practice the faces illustrated on each page. Pages that feature a movement (“Baby waves”) include an overlay of lines that emphasize the action (curved lines around a waving hand), which serves as a hint to readers to act out the movement and draw attention to that part of the photograph. In a sweet wink to readers, the baby on the last two pages of the book is reading this very book, as if to show that it really can be enjoyed by its intended audience. The biggest flaw here is that this type of book is a dime a dozen, both in terms of cute photographs and Mylar mirrors. Babes pictured are a diverse range.

While it doesn’t do anything truly original, it’s saved by the mirror play and adorable featured babies. (Board book. 6-18 mos.)

Pub Date: Aug. 7, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-4521-6890-6

Page Count: 20

Publisher: Chronicle

Review Posted Online: Aug. 27, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2019

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A happily multisensory exploration.

NOISY FARM

From the My First Touch and Feel Sound Book series

Farm animals make realistic noises as youngsters press embedded tactile features.

“Pat the cow’s back to hear her ‘Moo!’ ” Readers can press the fuzzy, black circle on a Holstein cow to hear its recorded noise. This formula is repeated on each double-page spread, one per farm critter (roosters, piglets, lambs and horses). Using stock photography, several smaller images of the animals appear on the left, and a full-page close-up dominates the right. The final two pages are a review of the five farmyard creatures and include a photo of each as well as a review of their sounds in succession via a touch of a button. While the layout is a little busy, the selection of photos and the tactile elements are nicely diverse. The text is simple enough for little ones, encourages interaction (“Can you baa like a lamb?”) and uses animal-specific vocabulary (fleece; mane). The sister title, Noisy Trucks (978-1-58925-609-5), follows much the same format, but, here, the stars are big rigs, monster trucks, fire trucks, backhoes and cement mixers. While the photos will thrill the vehicle-obsessed, the noises are less distinctive, save the fire truck’s siren. The facts about each type of vehicle provide just enough information: “A fire truck has a loud siren, ladders to climb, and hoses that spray water.” Despite the age recommendation of 3 years and up suggested on the back cover, the construction (with the battery secured by screw behind a plastic panel) looks sturdy and safe enough for younger readers.

A happily multisensory exploration. (Board book. 18 mos.-3)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-58925-610-1

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: Sept. 14, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2014

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A comical, fresh look at crayons and color

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THE DAY THE CRAYONS QUIT

Duncan wants to draw, but instead of crayons, he finds a stack of letters listing the crayons’ demands in this humorous tale.

Red is overworked, laboring even on holidays. Gray is exhausted from coloring expansive spaces (elephants, rhinos and whales). Black wants to be considered a color-in color, and Peach? He’s naked without his wrapper! This anthropomorphized lot amicably requests workplace changes in hand-lettered writing, explaining their work stoppage to a surprised Duncan. Some are tired, others underutilized, while a few want official titles. With a little creativity and a lot of color, Duncan saves the day. Jeffers delivers energetic and playful illustrations, done in pencil, paint and crayon. The drawings are loose and lively, and with few lines, he makes his characters effectively emote. Clever spreads, such as Duncan’s “white cat in the snow” perfectly capture the crayons’ conundrum, and photographic representations of both the letters and coloring pages offer another layer of texture, lending to the tale’s overall believability.

A comical, fresh look at crayons and color . (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: June 27, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-399-25537-3

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: April 15, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2013

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