This labored effort is obviously meant to be funny, but it's more in the goofball style of Beavis and Butthead than an entry in the ranks of fractured fairy tales by such masters as Scieszka/Lane or James Marshall. Dedicated to the latter, this is a sort of ``The Stupids Meet Goldilocks,'' illustrated with Marshallesque settings and characters. The Dumb Bunnies (Momma, in bra-top and skirt, is ``really dumb''; Poppa, in polka dot briefs, ``even dumber''; Baby Bunny is ``the dumbest bunny of all'') leave their wrong-temperature porridge for an outing that includes a picnic inside a working carwash and bowling in the public library while a librarian glares. They come home to flush ``Little Red Goldilocks'' down the toilet. One problem here is that these bunnies aren't out of step in a well-ordered universe; their world is occupied by similarly witless souls. A sign advertising a spelling bee is misspelled; when Momma Bunny notes that someone has been eating her bed, someone has. The lava lamps in a jacket send-up of the Good Night Moon room will be funny to adults, as will several of the other props (some may even notice the pun in lieu of the author's real name). But let's not elevate this by calling it wit—at best, it's harmless silliness. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 1994

ISBN: 0-590-47708-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 1994

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From the Adventures of Otto series

In his third beginning reader about Otto the robot, Milgrim (See Otto, 2002, etc.) introduces another new friend for Otto, a little mouse named Pip. The simple plot involves a large balloon that Otto kindly shares with Pip after the mouse has a rather funny pointing attack. (Pip seems to be in that I-point-and-I-want-it phase common with one-year-olds.) The big purple balloon is large enough to carry Pip up and away over the clouds, until Pip runs into Zee the bee. (“Oops, there goes Pip.”) Otto flies a plane up to rescue Pip (“Hurry, Otto, Hurry”), but they crash (and splash) in front of some hippos with another big balloon, and the story ends as it begins, with a droll “See Pip point.” Milgrim again succeeds in the difficult challenge of creating a real, funny story with just a few simple words. His illustrations utilize lots of motion and basic geometric shapes with heavy black outlines, all against pastel backgrounds with text set in an extra-large typeface. Emergent readers will like the humor in little Pip’s pointed requests, and more engaging adventures for Otto and Pip will be welcome additions to the limited selection of funny stories for children just beginning to read. (Easy reader. 5-7)

Pub Date: March 1, 2003

ISBN: 0-689-85116-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Atheneum

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2003

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Very young gardeners will need more information, but for certain picky eaters, the suggested strategy just might work.


A young spinach hater becomes a spinach lover after she has to grow her own in a class garden.

Unable to trade away the seed packet she gets from her teacher for tomatoes, cukes or anything else more palatable, Sylvia reluctantly plants and nurtures a pot of the despised veggie then transplants it outside in early spring. By the end of school, only the plot’s lettuce, radishes and spinach are actually ready to eat (talk about a badly designed class project!)—and Sylvia, once she nerves herself to take a nibble, discovers that the stuff is “not bad.” She brings home an armful and enjoys it from then on in every dish: “And that was the summer Sylvia Spivens said yes to spinach.” Raff uses unlined brushwork to give her simple cartoon illustrations a pleasantly freehand, airy look, and though Pryor skips over the (literally, for spinach) gritty details in both the story and an afterword, she does cover gardening basics in a simple and encouraging way.

Very young gardeners will need more information, but for certain picky eaters, the suggested strategy just might work. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: Nov. 6, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-9836615-1-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Readers to Eaters

Review Posted Online: Sept. 26, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2012

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