For little artists eager to spread some cheer with their glitter pens—on paper, of course.

GLITTER

Gloria, a little rhino, loves to spread “glittery happiness” in all her ventures.

Even though glitter is not a color, it is still Gloria’s favorite, as she uses it for everything she owns, giving her pants, slippers, and even scooter that extra “glitterama-razzamatazz.” Gloria scoots through town unperturbed about all the extra glitter she accidentally deposits on everyone and everything, leaving the town’s menagerie of anthropomorphic animal residents quite annoyed. “She glitzed up the plumbers, she spangled the drummers, she spritzed up the teachers and the long-distance runners.” Sweet, colorful cartoon paintings against a stark white background depict vexed workers and citizens, each with dabs of sparkly glitter on faces, feet, and bums. Protests of “No more glitter, Gloria!” are ignored by the little rhino, and, when everyone tries to clean up, things just get even messier. Then laughter breaks out, with the town finally accepting the happiness that Gloria’s trail of glitter inspires. Gloria’s unruffled composure makes for a whimsical counterpoint to the mostly rhyming text, the irregularity of which works surprisingly well. “Soon Gloria’s glitter had covered the entire town! There was some on the tower / and lots on the steeple, / As well as the market / and all of the people.”

For little artists eager to spread some cheer with their glitter pens—on paper, of course. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: March 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-68010-039-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: Feb. 1, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

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Superheroes, and readers, will live happily-ever-after.

THE THREE LITTLE SUPERPIGS AND THE GINGERBREAD MAN

Why have fairy tales lasted so long? Maybe it’s because they change with every teller.

It takes surprisingly little effort to turn the Three Little Pigs into superheroes. The Big Bad Wolf basically started out as a supervillain, with the ability to blow a house down, and the pigs had to perform spectacular feats to outwit him. In this picture book, the wolf, locked in the Happily Never After tower, devises a plot to escape. Using rotten eggs and spicy ginger, he creates the Gingerbread Man, who makes his way to a baking contest where the three pigs and other fairy-tale characters are competing to win the key to the city. The Gingerbread Man grabs the key, and not even superhero pigs are fast enough to catch him, but with their secret weapon—mustard (which one of the pigs also uses to bake cookies)—they save the day. The morals: Evil never triumphs, and mustard cookies are delicious. The book’s charm is in the details. There are splotches of mustard on the cookies featured on the endpapers, and a sly-looking mouse is hiding on many of the pages. The story even manages to include more than a dozen fairy-tale figures without seeming frenzied. Evans’ use of shading is so skillful that it almost seems possible to reach out and touch the characters. Most of the human characters are light-skinned. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Superheroes, and readers, will live happily-ever-after. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: Sept. 6, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-338-68221-2

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: July 27, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2022

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Though this celebration of community is joyful, there just is not much here.

ONE LOVE

A sugary poem, very loosely based on the familiar song, lacks focus.

Using only the refrain from the original (“One love, one heart, let’s get together and feel all right!”), the reggae great’s daughter Cedella Marley sees this song as her “happy song” and adapts it for children. However, the adaptation robs it of life. After the opening lines, readers familiar with the original song (or the tourism advertisement for Jamaica) will be humming along only to be stopped by the bland lines that follow: “One love, what the flower gives the bee.” and then “One love, what Mother Earth gives the tree.” Brantley-Newton’s sunny illustrations perfectly reflect the saccharine quality of the text. Starting at the beginning of the day, readers see a little girl first in bed, under a photograph of Bob Marley, the sun streaming into her room, a bird at the window. Each spread is completely redundant—when the text is about family love, the illustration actually shows little hearts floating from her parents to the little girl. An image of a diverse group getting ready to plant a community garden, walking on top of a river accompanies the words “One love, like the river runs to the sea.”

Though this celebration of community is joyful, there just is not much here. (afterword) (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: Oct. 5, 2011

ISBN: 978-1-4521-0224-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Chronicle Books

Review Posted Online: April 5, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2011

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