Puppy’s enthusiasm and waggable tail hold high appeal for little readers.




Puppy finds Christmas presents under the tree for all of his friends as he searches to uncover his own.

Yoon gives life to Puppy, complete with a movable, wagging tail. Knowing that he has a gift under the Christmas tree, Puppy searches for his but finds only those for his animal friends. Onomatopoeic text on the bottom right corner of each page (“Squeak! Squeak!”; “Meow! Meow!”) foreshadow which animal’s gift Puppy finds on the next page. He persists with no luck until he hears the classic “Ho! Ho! Ho!” and discovers his gift—a bone. Puppy’s felt-covered tail protrudes over the pages at the top of the book (he hunches down under the tree throughout). It wags with the smooth left-to-right pull of a sturdy tab that is accessible from every page. Because of this, Puppy remains in the same position throughout the book, with his expressions changing to show his growing disappointment. The illustrations are in Yoon’s signature simple style of bold colors with a thick black outline, offering just the right amount of detail. There are labeled gift tags, tiny candy canes on wrapping paper, and spokes on the wheels of the train. While the story itself uses a familiar trope, it will certainly appeal to toddlers with its brisk pace and predictable pattern. The joy of making Puppy’s tail wag excitedly or slowly back and forth is sure to delight any young reader.

Puppy’s enthusiasm and waggable tail hold high appeal for little readers. (Board book. 1-2)

Pub Date: Sept. 17, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5344-4343-3

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Sept. 24, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2019

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From the Llama Llama series

In this board book designed for the littlest llama lovers, adorable-as-ever Llama Llama (Llama Llama Red Pajama, 2005, etc.) gets ready for some Halloween fun.

Dewdney’s characteristic spare, apt rhymes convey a lot of action in effortlessly readable fashion. A charming and simple introduction to Halloween and its associated activities, this title finds little Llama Llama choosing and carving a pumpkin, pouring candy into bowls, picking out a costume and, finally, trick-or-treating. The costume Llama Llama decides to don—pointy teeth and a black mask and cape—is enough to frighten and fool his friends but not readers, who will immediately recognize and smile at the silly little mini-Dracula. With Dewdney’s characters as expressive as ever, young readers will be drawn right into the holiday fun, eagerly anticipating which costume Llama Llama will choose and excited to see him scare his friends and score some candy at trick-or-treat. In the equally appealing companion title, Llama Llama Jingle Bells,the little fellow gets ready for Christmas, baking and decorating some cookies in anticipation of Santa’s arrival. This simple holiday title will win Llama Llama new fans, and old friends will want to add it and its companion to their collections. (Board book. 1-2)


Pub Date: Aug. 19, 2014

ISBN: 978-0451469786

Page Count: 14

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: June 25, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2015

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Sounds like a winner, though the animal chorus is a bit thin.


Bunny hunts for carrots but finds noisy animal babies behind each flap instead.

“Bunny hops out of her burrow, / she’s looking for carrots to eat. / Can you help this fluffy friend / find a tasty treat?” The baaas, quacks, chirps, and horsey clip-clopping—activated by light as each of the first four big, shaped flaps lift—are gratifyingly loud and clear. All of the animal figures in the bright color pictures are intensely cute plush toys inserted into simple outdoorsy mixes of painted greenery and photographed flowers and bugs. Even the heaped carrots hiding behind the fifth and final flap are soft and fuzzy, though you’d never know that from the sound as Bunny hops on them (with a really loud boing) and chows down with crunches so comically amplified and rapid that caregivers too will laugh (at least the first dozen or so go-rounds). As no pressing of buttons is required to cue the sound effects, Bunny’s miniodyssey is suited to sharing at a slight remove with groups of toddlers as well as one-on-one. Batteries are replaceable, and there is (thankfully) an on-off switch on the rear cover.

Sounds like a winner, though the animal chorus is a bit thin. (Novelty board book. 18 mos.-2)

Pub Date: Jan. 8, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-4654-7853-5

Page Count: 12

Publisher: DK Publishing

Review Posted Online: Dec. 16, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2019

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