All aboard! The littlest readers with a yen for the rails are bound to bounce with delight.

LISTEN UP! TRAIN SONG

From the Big, Little Concepts series

Locomotive-loving storytimers rejoice! Your newest read-aloud is here. “Whoooooo! Chooooooo!”

In this bouncy follow-up to Allenby’s Shape Up, Construction Trucks! (2020), rhythm carries readers along the rails. “Where do the trains go? / There and back. / Let’s sing a train song / All down the track.” After this opening, double-page spreads introduce different train-related vocabulary and associated onomatopoeia. Large, colorful, close-up stock photographs of trains accompany the different sounds they’re capable of making. The engines go “Chuff-a-gruff-a!”; the metro sings “Whoooosh! Swoooosh!”; the boxcar says “Rattle-tattle!”; and more. Participation possibilities abound with the consistently inventive train sounds, and the bright and colorful images will be easy to see from across a room. (Lap readers may notice that the metro photograph seems to be backward.) Notes at the end of the book offer adult readers different ways to connect the book to rhythm and song. It may not be possible to sing each page in one fell swoop (despite the book’s repeated encouragement to “sing a train song”), but with some practice the youngest train fans will enjoy being asked to replicate the wide range of songs inside.

All aboard! The littlest readers with a yen for the rails are bound to bounce with delight. (Picture book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Aug. 10, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-77278-213-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Pajama Press

Review Posted Online: June 16, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2021

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A cheery board book to reinforce the oneness of babykind.

BABIES AROUND THE WORLD

Ten babies in 10 countries greet friends in almost 10 languages.

Countries of origin are subtly identified. For example, on the first spread, NYC is emblazoned on a blond, white baby’s hat as well as a brown baby’s scoot-car taxi. On the next spread, “Mexico City” is written on a light brown toddler’s bike. A flag in each illustration provides another hint. However, the languages are not named, so on first reading, the fine but important differences between Spanish and Portuguese are easily missed. This is also a problem on pages showing transliterated Arabic from Cairo and Afrikaans from Cape Town. Similarly, Chinese and Japanese are transliterated, without use of traditional hànzì or kanji characters. British English is treated as a separate language, though it is, after all, still English. French (spoken by 67 million people) is included, but German, Russian, and Hindi (spoken by 101 million, 145 million, and 370 million respectively) are not. English translations are included in a slightly smaller font. This world survey comes full circle, ending in San Francisco with a beige baby sleeping in an equally beige parent’s arms. The message of diversity is reinforced by images of three babies—one light brown, one medium brown, one white—in windows on the final spread.

A cheery board book to reinforce the oneness of babykind. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: April 4, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-938093-87-6

Page Count: 20

Publisher: Duo Press

Review Posted Online: April 26, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2017

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Sure to occupy little fingers.

I CAN COUNT

Practice counting objects and animals with an embedded arch of 10 movable beads.

This board book encourages number recognition and counting practice, thanks in part to its unusual design, which includes a curved die-cut opening through both covers and all pages. Occupying that space is a plastic rod arching from point to point, where it’s attached to an extra-thick internal page; strung on that rod are the 10 bright beads. The rhyming text encourages readers to answer questions like, “How many colors does a traffic light show?” or provides a directive such as, “Count [the airplanes] as they fly so high.” The beaded arch is usable from every page. Belaboring the point, “Slide the beads to help you count!” is written above it on every double-page spread. The number of items to count is clearly displayed as a numeral at the left-hand corner of every page, which is helpful for caregivers helping make the connection between one-to-one correspondence and the total number. When readers get to 10, they’re encouraged to count back down, a nice touch and a bit of an age-appropriate challenge aided by the beads. The illustrations are sweet, full of big-eyed characters. The simple and clear nature of the design lends itself to counting, and the beads facilitate both the math skill and fine-motor practice. This is assuming, of course, that the beads truly assist with counting rather than distract from it—a distinct possibility.

Sure to occupy little fingers. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 26, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-68010-686-2

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: July 27, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2021

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