BIG RED LOLLIPOP

Dynamic visual design distinguishes this tale of sibling conflict in an immigrant family. Running home from school, Rubina tells Ami (mom) the thrilling news of a birthday-party invitation. This concept’s new to Ami, but the real problem is younger sister Sana, who demands to attend as well. Ami agrees. Pouting all the way, Rubina takes Sana, who not only disrupts the games but eats both her own and Rubina’s big red lollipop party favor. Blackall’s peppy watercolor-and-pencil illustrations hum with vibrancy and a wonderful sense of children in constant motion. Every page shows fresh composition and scale. When the justifiably resentful Rubina chases Sana around the house, the pair of wee figures shows up eight times on that spread, racing from spot to spot like Hilary Knight’s Eloise. Then Sana receives an invitation herself and Ami almost makes her take even-younger sister Maryam along—but Rubina’s intervention prevents that, and Sana brings Rubina a big green lollipop in gratitude. They’re friends now, though it’s unknown whether the invitations that Rubina stopped receiving due to Sana’s antics ever recommence. Charming and spirited. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: March 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-670-06287-4

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2010

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

A forgettable tale.

THE LITTLEST REINDEER

Dot, the smallest reindeer at the North Pole, is too little to fly with the reindeer team on Christmas Eve, but she helps Santa in a different, unexpected way.

Dot is distressed because she can’t jump and fly like the other, bigger reindeer. Her family members encourage her and help her practice her skills, and her mother tells her, “There’s always next year.” Dot’s elf friend, Oliver, encourages her and spends time playing with her, doing things that Dot can do well, such as building a snowman and chasing their friend Yeti (who looks like a fuzzy, white gumdrop). On Christmas Eve, Santa and the reindeer team take off with their overloaded sleigh. Only Dot notices one small present that’s fallen in the snow, and she successfully leaps into the departing sleigh with the gift. This climactic flying leap into the sleigh is not adequately illustrated, as Dot is shown just starting to leap and then already in the sleigh. A saccharine conclusion notes that being little can sometimes be great and that “having a friend by your side makes anything possible.” The story is pleasant but predictable, with an improbably easy solution to Dot’s problem. Illustrations in a muted palette are similarly pleasant but predictable, with a greeting-card flavor that lacks originality. The elf characters include boys, girls, and adults; all the elves and Santa and Mrs. Claus are white.

A forgettable tale. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: Sept. 26, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-338-15738-3

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Aug. 21, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2017

Did you like this book?

LOLA LOVES STORIES

From the Lola & Leo series

Lola’s daddy takes her to the library every Saturday, where she finds “excellent books,” and every night her mommy or daddy reads them to her. The next day Lola acts out the story. On Sunday she’s a fairy princess; on Monday she takes her toy animals “on fantastic trips to places like Paris”; on Wednesday she’s a tiger, etc. Each new book and day provides Lola with a variety of tales to play out, with the last one—which is about a wild monster—posing the question, “What will Lola be tomorrow?” The final page shows her in a wolf suit just like Max’s. The library books, the pretending and the incorporation of the days of the week work together as a simple and pleasing premise. Beardshaw’s acrylic illustrations depict the multicultural kids and Lola’s black family with childlike charm, while the title will have librarians, parents and booksellers smiling. Alert: The book will be an invitation for lap kids to follow Lola’s lead—not such a bad thing. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: July 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-1-58089-258-2

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Charlesbridge

Review Posted Online: June 3, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2010

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more