A candidate for No. 2 on the list for scatological storytimes.

READ REVIEW

COCK-A-DOODLE-POO!

This farm is really full of…poo.

“Down on the farm there’s a terrible smell. / (The cow is pooping and the sheep as well!)” Farmer Jill, a woman of color with dark, curly hair, doesn’t mind; it’s “good for the land!” Rooster, however, wishes he could soar above all the stink on the ground—but he can’t fly. When Farmer Jill returns from town with straightened hair and someone poops on her new hairdo, the “cock-a-doodle-dooooo” that preceded it leads everyone to suspect Rooster. But Hen points out that he can’t fly. After showering, Farmer Jill finds her underpants have been stolen from the clothesline. Rooster feels guilty, as he’d made a catapult with the stolen panties in order to “fly,” and it was he who’d accidentally doodied on Jill. To himself he vows only to “fly” at night in case of future incontinence. When Fox raids the henhouse, Rooster uses his superpooper to unleash a cloaca-clearing cannonade of cock-a-doodle-poo on Fox’s head. The whole farm cheers his poopy performance. Smallman’s rhyming tale of mystery and derring-poo will definitely elicit giggles (and offend a few), but some extra words knock the meter off kilter in several places, and Rooster never faces the music for his odoriferous misdeeds. The colorful, cartoon illustrations of expressive animals are a plus, however.

A candidate for No. 2 on the list for scatological storytimes. (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: March 1, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-68010-080-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: Dec. 11, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2018

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?

Serve this superbly designed title to all who relish slightly scary stories.

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

  • New York Times Bestseller

  • IndieBound Bestseller

  • Caldecott Honor Book

CREEPY CARROTS!

Kids know vegetables can be scary, but rarely are edible roots out to get someone. In this whimsical mock-horror tale, carrots nearly frighten the whiskers off Jasper Rabbit, an interloper at Crackenhopper Field.

Jasper loves carrots, especially those “free for the taking.” He pulls some in the morning, yanks out a few in the afternoon, and comes again at night to rip out more. Reynolds builds delicious suspense with succinct language that allows understatements to be fully exploited in Brown’s hilarious illustrations. The cartoon pictures, executed in pencil and then digitally colored, are in various shades of gray and serve as a perfectly gloomy backdrop for the vegetables’ eerie orange on each page. “Jasper couldn’t get enough carrots … / … until they started following him.” The plot intensifies as Jasper not only begins to hear the veggies nearby, but also begins to see them everywhere. Initially, young readers will wonder if this is all a product of Jasper’s imagination. Was it a few snarling carrots or just some bathing items peeking out from behind the shower curtain? The ending truly satisfies both readers and the book’s characters alike. And a lesson on greed goes down like honey instead of a forkful of spinach.

Serve this superbly designed title to all who relish slightly scary stories. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Aug. 21, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-4424-0297-3

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: May 2, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2012

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more