A serviceable but uninspired salute to parenthood.

MY DYNAMITE DAD

A variety of little ones express love for their dads.

All the wonderful things dads do are the focus of this simple board book. Each turn of the page presents a nature shot of a fully grown animal with its young accompanied by a reason fathers are “dynamite!” While they are all good reasons, they don’t always make sense with the pictures they’re paired with. An elephant “defends me from bad guys” while standing over its child protectively, but it’s hard to figure out how a lion “laughs at all my 'knock-knock' jokes.” In the latter picture, a cub nuzzles its father’s face; there’s nothing to imply either laughter or the telling of jokes. Animal lovers will enjoy pictures of chameleons, penguins, turtles, and other creatures, but that's the only thing in the book's corner. A concurrently published companion, My Marvelous Mom, is presented in the same fashion, with the only difference being the obvious one. For readers looking for something to prime the pump for Mother's or Father's Day these will do in a pinch, but they will both be quickly forgotten.

A serviceable but uninspired salute to parenthood. (Board book. 1-2)

Pub Date: April 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4549-1875-2

Page Count: 22

Publisher: Sterling

Review Posted Online: March 16, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2016

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As bright and bold as the holiday it celebrates.

HOP! HOP!

An excited little one celebrates Easter.

The Easter Bunny is on its way, and Patricelli’s one-haired tot is thrilled. He prepares for the holiday by painting eggs and making bunny ears. On the big day, he excitedly looks for Easter eggs while his parents watch. The bold, rounded illustrations catch the eye, with a wide range of colors used throughout. The author pays a little lip service toward education by showing primary colors combining to create secondary colors, but the book's main focus is the exuberance that comes with celebrating the holiday, particularly when the traditions are so new and exciting. The enthusiasm is infectious, and read-alouds will most likely lead to little ones’ looking to do some arts and crafts of their very own.

As bright and bold as the holiday it celebrates. (Board book. 1-2)

Pub Date: Feb. 10, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-7636-6319-3

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Jan. 20, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2015

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A bright and friendly but no more than serviceable board book.

MY FIRST PEEK-A-BOO ANIMALS

From the World of Eric Carle series

Little readers play peekaboo with animals.

Carle’s iconic illustrations form the centerpiece of this simple lift-the-flap board book. Each double-page spread features an animal obscured by a flap (a solid block of trademark, textured Carle color) on one side and a four-line abcb stanza describing the animal on the opposite page. Readers are given hints about the hidden creature before they play peekaboo and lift the flap to reveal a monkey, horse, turtle, and more. “I’m a big cat, / but I don’t purr. / I’ve got black stripes / and bright orange fur.” Although most of the facts offered are scientifically valid, the ambiguously worded modifier for the monkey’s clue—“With my long tail, / I swing in the trees”—risks imparting the misinformation that monkeys suspend themselves from their tails. Carle’s illustrations are as recognizable to little readers as the characters on Sesame Street or Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, and the familiarity breeds appreciation. There’s nothing truly special or distinctive regarding the mechanics of this particular title, but the familiar look acts as a comfort food–esque motivation to get little ones’ attention.

A bright and friendly but no more than serviceable board book. (Board book. 1-2)

Pub Date: June 6, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5344-0105-1

Page Count: 18

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: June 19, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2017

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