TOAD by Ruth Brown

TOAD

by & illustrated by
Age Range: 3 - 6
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KIRKUS REVIEW

 Gloopy, gloppy, bumpy, and lumpy: Toads provide slews of onomatopoeic opportunities for writers, and plenty of potential for artists interested in drawing warts, slime, and muck. Brown (One Stormy Night, 1993, etc.) is perfect for the task. Her text exaggerates the poor toad's noxious qualities (``odorous, oozing, foul and filthy''), denigrates his cuisine of bugs, worms, and flies, and mocks his clumsy hop. When a monster appears on the scene and attempts to gobble up the toad, readers realize just what the bumps and venom are for. ``Yuuuuuck!'' screams the monster, coughing ``the happy toad, the safe toad'' back into the swamp. Brown's paintings drip with the brown and olive colors of decaying vegetation and fetid swamp stuff. She incorporates that medium's tendency to drip and glop right into her work: Splats of paint cross the toad's bumpy back, while green webbed footprints splash across the title pages. Observant readers will spot the approaching monster long before toad does, heightening the anticipation of the inevitable--though failed--tryst. The endpapers match the amphibious decor, displaying a brocade of frog eggs. Exquisitely slimy. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: March 1st, 1997
ISBN: 0-525-45757-7
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Dutton
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1st, 1996




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