A parable of perseverance and positive attitude.

READ REVIEW

TAXI RIDE WITH VICTOR

A space taxi ride with Victor probably won’t get you anywhere near where you ask to go, but….

Victor has always wanted to be a taxi driver, but now that he is one, he gets lost. A pale, four-armed, sunglasses-wearing ET, Victor always tries to find the right place, though. On Monday, he picks up a seven-limbed, five-eyed lady who wants to go to the hairdresser but drops her at the amusement park. On Tuesday, her grandson wants to go to that amusement park; Victor takes him to the library. The next day, the head librarian needs to get to work but is dropped at the dentist! (Judging by his snaggly teeth, this is not so bad an outcome.) The ghost (who’s toothless) wants to go to the dentist too, but it goes to the mad scientist’s lab instead. Instead of at the tallest mountain, a rain cloud finds itself on the driest planet…and the queen of the driest planet ends up at the hairdresser. As the narrator (a three-eyed, gray creature) says, Victor may not be the greatest taxi driver, but he sure excels at bringing people happiness—so they all throw him a party. This translation/adaptation of a title originally published in Germany in 2018 tells its tale without too many frills, but Klever’s whackadoodle, literally spacey, bright illustrations (shortlisted for the World Illustration Award) are outta this world.

A parable of perseverance and positive attitude. (Picture book. 3-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 24, 2019

ISBN: 978-3-7913-7406-2

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Prestel

Review Posted Online: June 16, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2019

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Lit with sweetness.

SHARE SOME KINDNESS, BRING SOME LIGHT

Coco, who loves her gentle friend Bear, is shocked to learn that the other forest animals do not know about his kindness.

Inspired by one of her grandmother’s favorite maxims, Coco, a girl with light brown skin and curly brown hair, works with Bear to “share some kindness [and] bring some light” to the other animals in the forest. Interpreting it literally, the two make cookies (kindness) and lanterns (light) to share with the other animals. They trek through the snow-covered forest to deliver their gifts, but no one trusts Bear enough to accept them. As night begins to fall, Bear and Coco head home with the lanterns and cookies. On the way through the quiet forest, they hear a small voice pleading for help; it’s Baby Deer, stuck in the snow. They help free him, and Bear gives the young one a ride home on his back. When the other animals see both that Baby Deer is safe and that Bear is responsible for this, they begin to recognize all the wonderful things about Bear that they had not noticed before. The episode is weak on backstory—how did Coco and Bear become friends? Why don’t the animals know Bear better by now?—but Stott’s delicately inked and colored illustrations offer beguiling views of lightly anthropomorphized woodland critters that make it easy to move past these stumbling blocks. (This book was reviewed digitally with 10-by-18-inch double-page spreads viewed at 67% of actual size.)

Lit with sweetness. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Oct. 27, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-5344-6238-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: July 28, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2020

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Lost and found was never so riotously funny or emotionally draining.

DON'T FORGET DEXTER!

A lost toy goes through an existential crisis.

The setup is on the copyright page. Amid the markers of a universally recognizable waiting room—fish tank, chairs against the wall, receptionist’s window, kids’ coloring table—is a tiny orange T. Rex with a dialogue balloon: “Hello?” A turn of the page brings Dexter T. Rexter into close view, and he explains his dilemma directly to readers. He and his best friend came for a checkup, but Jack’s disappeared. Maybe readers can help? But when Jack is still MIA, Dexter becomes disconsolate, believing his friend might have left him behind on purpose; maybe he likes another toy better? Dexter weighs his good qualities against those he lacks, and he comes up short. But when readers protest (indicated by a change in Dexter’s tone after the turn of the page), Dexter gains the determination he needs to make a plan. Unfortunately, though hilariously, his escape plan fails. But luckily, a just-as-upset black boy comes looking for Dexter, and the two are reunited. Ward’s ink, colored-pencil, and cut-paper illustrations give readers a toy’s view of the world and allow children to stomp in Dexter’s feet for a while, his facial expressions giving them lots of clues to his feelings. Readers will be reminded of both Knuffle Bunny and Scaredy Squirrel, but Dexter is a character all his own.

Lost and found was never so riotously funny or emotionally draining. (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5420-4727-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Two Lions

Review Posted Online: Aug. 2, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2017

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more