Walker the Goose


An appealing tale of good things coming to geese who wait.

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A goose longs for a place to belong in this rhyming, based-on-a-true-story picture book from Blumer (Wooly Meets the Chickens, 2015).

All Walker the Goose wants is to find a mate and start a family. When she lands on “the most pretty farm she’d seen in all the state,” she knows that this is where she wants to make her home. But how to start a family? In typical preschool picture-book fashion, the tale follows Walker as she meets the different animals on the farm: a cow, a sheep, and a pig. Walker asks each of them for a place to stay in a sweet and sheepish, slightly altered refrain: “I need a place to stay. / I won’t get in the way. / Could you kindly find a wee small space for me?” But each animal reminds her that she’s a goose, not a cow, a sheep, or a pig; if she desires her own family, she needs to find a gander. Mrs. Pig encourages Walker to hang onto her dreams and never give up, but the poor goose becomes heartbroken. She loves the farm, but she can’t find a mate. Luckily, Walker wallows in her despair for only a couple of pages before a handsome gander shows up. In an echo of Walker’s initial response to the farm, where she “fell in love with what she found,” the gander has the same experience—only the object of his affection is Walker. While it doesn’t offer much tension, this sweet, inventively rhymed story delivers plenty of opportunities for lap readers to chime in with animal noises. Walker’s clumsy antics—she lands on a sheep and crashes into the barn—should make young readers giggle. Berlin’s charming illustrations are semirealistic; while the animals have humanized expressions, they are definitely real creatures rather than cartoons (with the exception of the stars around Walker’s head when she hits the barn). Animal lovers should enjoy this farm title, and Walker’s story, told in a consistent AAB CCB rhyme scheme, is calm enough for pre-bedtime reading.

An appealing tale of good things coming to geese who wait.

Pub Date: Nov. 25, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-9966164-5-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Chickadilly Press

Review Posted Online: Feb. 8, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2016


The Buehners retell the old familiar tale with a jump-roping, rhyme-spouting Goldilocks. When their porridge proves to be too hot to eat, the bear family goes for a stroll. Meanwhile, Goldilocks comes knocking to find a jump-roping friend. This Goldilocks does not simply test out the chairs: “Big chair, middle chair, little chair, too, / Somebody’s here to bounce on you!” And so continues the old favorite, interspersed with Goldilocks’s jump-rope verse. When she escapes through the bedroom window, none of the characters are sure what sort of creature they have just encountered. The Buehner’s homey illustrations perfectly capture the facial expressions of the characters, and lend a particular kind of mischief to Goldilocks. Readers may miss the message on the copyright page, but hidden within each picture are three creatures, instantly adding challenge and appeal. Cute, but there’s not quite enough new here to make it a must. (Picture book. 3-8)

Pub Date: March 1, 2007

ISBN: 0-8037-2939-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2007


The seemingly ageless Seeger brings back his renowned giant for another go in a tuneful tale that, like the art, is a bit sketchy, but chockful of worthy messages. Faced with yearly floods and droughts since they’ve cut down all their trees, the townsfolk decide to build a dam—but the project is stymied by a boulder that is too huge to move. Call on Abiyoyo, suggests the granddaughter of the man with the magic wand, then just “Zoop Zoop” him away again. But the rock that Abiyoyo obligingly flings aside smashes the wand. How to avoid Abiyoyo’s destruction now? Sing the monster to sleep, then make it a peaceful, tree-planting member of the community, of course. Seeger sums it up in a postscript: “every community must learn to manage its giants.” Hays, who illustrated the original (1986), creates colorful, if unfinished-looking, scenes featuring a notably multicultural human cast and a towering Cubist fantasy of a giant. The song, based on a Xhosa lullaby, still has that hard-to-resist sing-along potential, and the themes of waging peace, collective action, and the benefits of sound ecological practices are presented in ways that children will both appreciate and enjoy. (Picture book. 5-9)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-689-83271-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2001

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