A playful romp that has lost little in its adaptation and miniaturization.

SALLY AT THE FARM

The black Labrador of picture-book fame makes her board-book debut.

Adapted from the book Sally Goes to the Farm (2002), the titular heroine enjoys a car ride, encounters various farm animals, and meets a new canine friend named Molly. Huneck’s vibrantly colored woodcut illustrations translate well to the smaller format whether on full- or double-page spreads. Most of the images will be easily recognizable to little ones who are still learning to identify farm critters. One or two sentences of very simple text are printed in a bold, black font against a white background on each spread to describe Sally and Molly’s antics. Sally in the Sand, an adaptation of Sally Goes to the Beach (2000), is an equally stripped-down version of the dog’s day playing in the sand and waves. While the ending is a bit abrupt, Huneck’s undulating lines are perfect for the seaside scenes.

A playful romp that has lost little in its adaptation and miniaturization. (Board book. 18 mos.-3)

Pub Date: March 11, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-4197-1030-8

Page Count: 20

Publisher: Abrams Appleseed

Review Posted Online: April 9, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2014

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Perfect for Valentine’s Day, but the syrupy sweetness will cloy after the holiday.

THE ABCS OF LOVE

Animal parents declare their love for their offspring in alphabetical order.

Each page displays an enormous capital letter, one line of verse with the keyword capitalized, and a loving nonhuman parent gazing adoringly at their baby. “A is for Always. I always love you more. / B is for Butterfly kisses. It’s you that I adore.” While not named or labelled as such, the A is also for an alligator and its hatchling and B is for a butterfly and a butterfly child (not a caterpillar—biology is not the aim of this title) interacting in some way with the said letter. For E there are an elephant and a calf; U features a unicorn and foal; and X, keyed to the last letter of the animal’s name, corresponds to a fox and three pups. The final double-page spread shows all the featured creatures and their babies as the last line declares: “Baby, I love you from A to Z!” The verse is standard fare and appropriately sentimental. The art is cartoony-cute and populated by suitably loving critters on solid backgrounds. Hearts accent each scene, but the theme of the project is never in any doubt.

Perfect for Valentine’s Day, but the syrupy sweetness will cloy after the holiday. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-7282-2095-6

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Sourcebooks Wonderland

Review Posted Online: Jan. 27, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2021

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A pleasant holiday spent with a perfectly charming character.

SPOOKY POOKIE

One of Boynton's signature characters celebrates Halloween.

It's Halloween time, and Pookie the pig is delighted. Mom helps the little porker pick out the perfect Halloween costume, a process that spans the entire board book. Using an abcb rhyme scheme, Boynton dresses Pookie in a series of cheerful costumes, including a dragon, a bunny, and even a caped superhero. Pookie eventually settles on the holiday classic, a ghost, by way of a bedsheet. Boynton sprinkles in amusing asides to her stanzas as Pookie offers costume commentary ("It's itchy"; "It's hot"; "I feel silly"). Little readers will enjoy the notion of transforming themselves with their own Halloween costumes while reading this book, and a few parents may get some ideas as well. Boynton's clean, sharp illustrations are as good as ever. This is Pookie's first holiday title, but readers will surely welcome more.

A pleasant holiday spent with a perfectly charming character. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: July 7, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-553-51233-5

Page Count: 18

Publisher: Robin Corey/Random

Review Posted Online: July 27, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2016

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