THE RING WENT ZING!

A STORY THAT ENDS WITH A KISS

When a frog and chicken fall in love, the frog proposes but drops the ring. It skips away past a jogging swan, a rabbit on a skateboard, a goat on a trike and a sausage dog on a motorcycle. As the chicken and frog give chase, the swan calls out, “Hop on! We’ll stop that ring!” Each animal they pass adds to the stack, à la the Bremen Town Musicians. In energetic pursuit the sextet “race[s], chase[s], stretche[s], perche[s], hurrie[s], scurrie[s], swerve[s], and lurche[s]” as the runaway ring tings, pings, zings—and plops into the town-square fountain. Everyone is dismayed, except the frog, who hops into the fountain and retrieves it. The story ends with a kiss—and a surprise. It’s the details in Barton’s comic pencil-and-watercolor illustrations combined with the oh-so-catchy text that put the zing in the tale. Accessories add flair to each character: The chicken wears a pearl necklace; her swain has a red-and-white striped scarf; the swan wears headphones; the dog strums a guitar. The playful type puts bounce in the madcap adventure. A ring-a-ding winner. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: June 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-8037-3311-4

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Dial

Review Posted Online: Dec. 27, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2010

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

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

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles.

THE DINKY DONKEY

Even more alliterative hanky-panky from the creators of The Wonky Donkey (2010).

Operating on the principle (valid, here) that anything worth doing is worth overdoing, Smith and Cowley give their wildly popular Wonky Donkey a daughter—who, being “cute and small,” was a “dinky donkey”; having “beautiful long eyelashes” she was in consequence a “blinky dinky donkey”; and so on…and on…and on until the cumulative chorus sails past silly and ludicrous to irresistibly hysterical: “She was a stinky funky plinky-plonky winky-tinky,” etc. The repeating “Hee Haw!” chorus hardly suggests what any audience’s escalating response will be. In the illustrations the daughter sports her parent’s big, shiny eyes and winsome grin while posing in a multicolored mohawk next to a rustic boombox (“She was a punky blinky”), painting her hooves pink, crossing her rear legs to signal a need to pee (“winky-tinky inky-pinky”), demonstrating her smelliness with the help of a histrionic hummingbird, and finally cozying up to her proud, evidently single parent (there’s no sign of another) for a closing cuddle.

Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-60083-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2019

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more