From the Zoom series

Space adventurer Ava explores the solar system and gets home in time for supper.

This spectacular space jaunt is a top-tier blend of adventure and information, creatively conveyed. Bright colors, inventive use of die-cut pages, and one spectacular pop-up tableau provide eye-catching scenes, almost every one offering a window onto the scene to follow. Ava, a brown-skinned young astronaut-in-the-making, has a bedroom filled with models of rockets and planets. “This is Ava. Today she is going on a big space adventure. / Ava climbs into her rocket ship and waits for the final countdown.” The next five double-page spreads depicting levels of staging around Ava’s rocket are die-cut in the shapes of numerals, inviting kids to join in the countdown: “5 / 4 / 3 / 2 / 1 / 0 / LIFT OFF.” Ava and her imperturbable cat blast off into space as the crew in the control room monitors the operation. First stop is the International Space Station. After Ava makes a “daring spacewalk” to repair a solar panel, she heads for the moon, then around the sun, through the asteroid belt, and past each of the eight planets in the solar system, with cutaways in every scene previewing the coming destinations. The text is accessible for young readers yet rich in information and detail. In companion title Ocean Adventure, a black boy named Noah has an equally thrilling undersea expedition.

Absolutely stellar. (Board book. 2-6)

Pub Date: June 2, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-9999679-8-7

Page Count: 36

Publisher: What on Earth Books

Review Posted Online: June 3, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2020

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A nursery school approach to a general concept. "A tree is nice"- Why? Because..."We can climb the pirate ship...pick the playhouses out of the leaves. A tree is nice to hang a swing in...Birds build nests in trees... Sticks come off trees...People have picnics there too"...etc. etc. One follows the give and take of a shared succession of reactions to what a tree- or trees- can mean. There is a kind of poetic simplicity that is innate in small children. Marc Simont has made the pictures, half in full color, and they too have a childlike directness (with an underlying sophistication that adults will recognize). Not a book for everyone -but those who like it will like it immensely. The format (6 x 11) makes it a difficult book for shelving, so put it in the "clean hands" section of flat books. Here's your first book for Arbor Day use- a good spring and summer item.

Pub Date: June 15, 1956

ISBN: 978-0-06-443147-7

Page Count: 36

Publisher: Harper

Review Posted Online: July 17, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1956

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Instills a sense of well-being in youngsters while encouraging them to explore the natural world.


This reassuring picture book exemplifies how parents throughout the animal kingdom make homes for their offspring.

The narrative is written from the point of view of a parent talking to their child: “If you were a beaver, I would gnaw on trees with my teeth to build a cozy lodge for us to sleep in during the day.” Text appears in big, easy-to-read type, with the name of the creature in boldface. Additional facts about the animal appear in a smaller font, such as: “Beavers have transparent eyelids to help them see under water.” The gathering of land, air, and water animals includes a raven, a flying squirrel, and a sea lion. “Home” might be a nest, a den, or a burrow. One example, of a blue whale who has homes in the north and south (ocean is implied), will help children stretch the concept into feeling at home in the larger world. Illustrations of the habitats have an inviting luminosity. Mature and baby animals are realistically depicted, although facial features appear to have been somewhat softened, perhaps to appeal to young readers. The book ends with the comforting scene of a human parent and child silhouetted in the welcoming lights of the house they approach: “Wherever you may be, you will always have a home with me.”

Instills a sense of well-being in youngsters while encouraging them to explore the natural world. (Informational picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: Nov. 12, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-63217-224-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Little Bigfoot/Sasquatch

Review Posted Online: July 28, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2019

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