A rowdy, raucous return for Niño and a dazzling debut for his most worthy rivals.

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RUDAS

NIÑO'S HORRENDOUS HERMANITAS

Pint-sized luchador Niño captured readers’ imaginations in the Pura Belpré Award–winning title Niño Wrestles the World (2014). Now he is back, but this time his baby sisters, Las Hermanitas, have come to steal the show.

Childlike drawings on the opening endpapers explain that luchadores are divided into two categories: técnicos (good guys) and rudos (bad guys). Las Hermanitas are definitely rudas. Niño is playing with some familiar characters, El Extraterrestre and La Llorona, when Las Hermanitas burst onto the scene and the rumble begins. They take on their opponents one by one and use whatever rotten means necessary to crush the competition, starting right off with a move called the Poopy Bomb Blowout. The action and humor continue until only Niño can bring an end to his little sisters’ destruction. This follow-up uses the same playful, graphic illustration style and vibrant color palette seen in the original. Several Spanish words and phrases appear in the callouts and speech bubbles, many of which are defined in the closing endpaper illustrations. The English text is peppered with alliteration, onomatopoeia, and a few words that will stretch young readers’ growing vocabulary (such as “phenomenal” and “preposterous”). The overall effect is a narrative that begs to be read aloud.

A rowdy, raucous return for Niño and a dazzling debut for his most worthy rivals. (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: Oct. 18, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-62672-240-8

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Neal Porter/Roaring Brook

Review Posted Online: July 2, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2016

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Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles.

THE DINKY DONKEY

Even more alliterative hanky-panky from the creators of The Wonky Donkey (2010).

Operating on the principle (valid, here) that anything worth doing is worth overdoing, Smith and Cowley give their wildly popular Wonky Donkey a daughter—who, being “cute and small,” was a “dinky donkey”; having “beautiful long eyelashes” she was in consequence a “blinky dinky donkey”; and so on…and on…and on until the cumulative chorus sails past silly and ludicrous to irresistibly hysterical: “She was a stinky funky plinky-plonky winky-tinky,” etc. The repeating “Hee Haw!” chorus hardly suggests what any audience’s escalating response will be. In the illustrations the daughter sports her parent’s big, shiny eyes and winsome grin while posing in a multicolored mohawk next to a rustic boombox (“She was a punky blinky”), painting her hooves pink, crossing her rear legs to signal a need to pee (“winky-tinky inky-pinky”), demonstrating her smelliness with the help of a histrionic hummingbird, and finally cozying up to her proud, evidently single parent (there’s no sign of another) for a closing cuddle.

Should be packaged with an oxygen supply, as it will incontestably elicit uncontrollable gales of giggles. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-60083-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2019

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Though it will never usurp Dr. Seuss, it will still find a home where Christian families of faith seek inspirational picture...

WHEN I PRAY FOR YOU

Turner adds another title to his picture-book series that highlights the miracles in the mundane (When God Made Light, 2018, etc.).

In the vein of children’s-bookshelf stalwart Oh, the Places You’ll Go, Turner’s rhyming text includes both prayers and life advice for a growing child, beginning with infancy and moving on to adolescence. At times the rhyme and meter are strained, muddling meaning and making the tempo feel occasionally awkward when read aloud. Overall, though, the book executes its mission, presenting Christian theological truths within the rhythmic inspirational text. For this third series installment Turner’s text is paired with a new illustrator, whose bright illustrations of wide-eyed children have great shelf appeal. While David Catrow’s previous illustrations in the series featured effervescent black protagonists, the child in Barnes’ illustrations appears white, though she occupies an otherwise diverse world. While illustrated as a prayer from a mother for her daughter, the text itself is gender neutral.

Though it will never usurp Dr. Seuss, it will still find a home where Christian families of faith seek inspirational picture books. (Picture book/religion. 3-6)

Pub Date: Feb. 19, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-52565058-4

Page Count: 48

Publisher: WaterBrook

Review Posted Online: Dec. 5, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2019

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