Delightfully delicious.

READ REVIEW

I LOVE TO GOBBLE YOU UP!

From the Made With Love series

This short, sweet, and silly Thanksgiving puppet book is no turkey.

Despite a title suggestive of a treatise on unrepentant cannibalism, this book should prove a read-aloud delight for caregivers and toddlers alike. Seemingly indestructible, it features plush turkey feathers that extend from the top of the book to adorn the turkey depicted on the cover and on each succeeding two-page set piece. The message is simple: “If kisses were gobbles, I’d gobble you up! // I’d gobble your nose… // and your cute little toes.” The brief text includes only two additional sentences, with a total of five additional “gobbles.” “Gobbles” may be read aloud, turkey-style, or while miming munching of the relevant extremities; either way, much giggling should ensue. Author/illustrator Magsamen’s artwork is done in faux-needlecraft style, as though assembled from pieces of felt stitched to the backgrounds, and embellished by copious hearts. The two turkey protagonists are rendered with a nonrealistic, cartoonish simplicity, with blank expressions that nonetheless imply affection, curiosity, and playfulness. They’d look right at home in a Thanksgiving episode of South Park. Varied compositions, with turkey No. 2 in the foreground or on a distant barn roof, or turkey No. 1 standing on grass, then on a fence, and then backside toward readers, create an impressive sense of action while keeping turkey No. 1 firmly attached to its feathers.

Delightfully delicious. (Board book. 6 mos.-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 28, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-338-11092-0

Page Count: 10

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2019

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With Ivan’s movie out this year from Disney, expect great interest—it will be richly rewarded.

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THE ONE AND ONLY BOB

Tiny, sassy Bob the dog, friend of The One and Only Ivan (2012), returns to tell his tale.

Wisecracking Bob, who is a little bit Chihuahua among other things, now lives with his girl, Julia, and her parents. Happily, her father works at Wildworld Zoological Park and Sanctuary, the zoo where Bob’s two best friends, Ivan the gorilla and Ruby the elephant, live, so Bob gets to visit and catch up with them regularly. Due to an early betrayal, Bob doesn’t trust humans (most humans are good only for their thumbs); he fears he’s going soft living with Julia, and he’s certain he is a Bad Dog—as in “not a good representative of my species.” On a visit to the zoo with a storm threatening, Bob accidentally falls into the gorilla enclosure just as a tornado strikes. So that’s what it’s like to fly. In the storm’s aftermath, Bob proves to everyone (and finally himself) that there is a big heart in that tiny chest…and a brave one too. With this companion, Applegate picks up where her Newbery Medal winner left off, and fans will be overjoyed to ride along in the head of lovable, self-deprecating Bob on his storm-tossed adventure. His wry doggy observations and attitude are pitch perfect (augmented by the canine glossary and Castelao’s picture dictionary of dog postures found in the frontmatter). Gorilla Ivan described Julia as having straight, black hair in the previous title, and Castelao's illustrations in that volume showed her as pale-skinned. (Finished art not available for review.)

With Ivan’s movie out this year from Disney, expect great interest—it will be richly rewarded. (afterword) (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: May 5, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-06-299131-7

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: March 25, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2020

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THE WONKY DONKEY

The print version of a knee-slapping cumulative ditty.

In the song, Smith meets a donkey on the road. It is three-legged, and so a “wonky donkey” that, on further examination, has but one eye and so is a “winky wonky donkey” with a taste for country music and therefore a “honky-tonky winky wonky donkey,” and so on to a final characterization as a “spunky hanky-panky cranky stinky-dinky lanky honky-tonky winky wonky donkey.” A free musical recording (of this version, anyway—the author’s website hints at an adults-only version of the song) is available from the publisher and elsewhere online. Even though the book has no included soundtrack, the sly, high-spirited, eye patch–sporting donkey that grins, winks, farts, and clumps its way through the song on a prosthetic metal hoof in Cowley’s informal watercolors supplies comical visual flourishes for the silly wordplay. Look for ready guffaws from young audiences, whether read or sung, though those attuned to disability stereotypes may find themselves wincing instead or as well.

Hee haw. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: May 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-545-26124-1

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Dec. 29, 2018

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