Here’s one e-book that doesn’t lay an egg.



You say potAHto, and I say potAto; you say eGGzactly and I say eXactly.

You’re wrong, eggcept maybe if you’re from BAHston. OK, we’ll let you slide on the potato, but we have to call you on the “GG.” This is most definitely an amuse-as-you-instruct application from Maysonave, embedded with plenty of definitions of words such as umpteen, Chinook, perused, caviar and ransacked. There are also quick but complete fun facts—“Female crows typically lay a clutch of three to seven eggs”; “A nocturnal mammal, the fox only hunts for its food at night”—and other interactive features that are minor (often maddening) adventures to find and deploy. It’s not much of a story, per se, more an associative exploration of sound. The gist of the matter is to pronounce “ex” like “x,” and not like “egg”: exactly, extraordinary, exuberant, exemplar and exceptional, for starters. It is set in a kingdom of waxy pastels with a kind of Yellow Submarine kookiness, and the interaction is vigorous without being frantic. The characters have a static feel that lend a dreamy quality to the proceedings, as does the general psychedelic tone, but this is far from solely eye candy, though it does go on for a very long time.

Here’s one e-book that doesn’t lay an egg. (iPad enhanced e-book. 4-10)

Pub Date: March 12, 2013


Page Count: -

Publisher: Mania Tales

Review Posted Online: Dec. 7, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2013

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Like an ocean-going “Lion and the Mouse,” a humpback whale and a snail “with an itchy foot” help each other out in this cheery travelogue. Responding to a plaintive “Ride wanted around the world,” scrawled in slime on a coastal rock, whale picks up snail, then sails off to visit waters tropical and polar, stormy and serene before inadvertently beaching himself. Off hustles the snail, to spur a nearby community to action with another slimy message: “SAVE THE WHALE.” Donaldson’s rhyme, though not cumulative, sounds like “The house that Jack built”—“This is the tide coming into the bay, / And these are the villagers shouting, ‘HOORAY!’ / As the whale and the snail travel safely away. . . .” Looking in turn hopeful, delighted, anxious, awed, and determined, Scheffler’s snail, though tiny next to her gargantuan companion, steals the show in each picturesque seascape—and upon returning home, provides so enticing an account of her adventures that her fellow mollusks all climb on board the whale’s tail for a repeat voyage. Young readers will clamor to ride along. (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: March 1, 2004

ISBN: 0-8037-2922-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2004

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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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