Definitely has a preschooler’s number.

COUNTING DINOS

Dinosaurs get together to count legs, arms, wings, spikes, and more.

The rhymed tally starts off with a young dino named Rodrigo (properly identified, in the closing fact roundup, as an ankylosaurus) with “one tail he liked to swing for fun!” Along comes Sue (a T. Rex) with two arms and two pairs of claws, Stan (a triceratops) with three horns, and so on up to 10 little hatchlings of diverse species. In her prehistoric scenes Bianda depicts dinosaurs, early reptiles, and even a set of contemporaneous opossumlike mammals (and bumblebees flying into a wasps’ nest) in bright monochrome hues, with googly eyes and (for all the scales, horns, and toothy smiles on display) distinctly toddlerish looks. She also places large numerals in strategic spots and tucks in seed cones, ferns, comets, and other prehistoric items for more counting opportunities. Dinosaur counting exercises are far from an extinct or even endangered picture-book species but this is a particularly lively specimen, and aside from a few artistic liberties, the author and illustrator both take care to keep their dino facts straight.

Definitely has a preschooler’s number. (Picture book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-8075-1281-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Whitman

Review Posted Online: June 25, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2018

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Young dino fans will enjoy it, though their grown-ups may not.

NOISY DINOSAURS

From the My First Touch and Feel Sound Book series

What sounds did dinosaurs make? We don't really know.

Litton suggests some possibilities while introducing sophisticated vocabulary in a board-book format. Five dinosaurs are featured: Tyrannosaurus rex, Stegosaurus, Pterodactyl, Diplodocus, and Triceratops. For each species there is a brief description that highlights its distinctive features, followed by an invitation to hear and repeat the dinosaur's sound. There is no explanation for why scientists think T. Rex “roared,” Stegosaurus “howled,” Pterodactyl “screeched,” Diplodocus “growled,” or Triceratops “grunted.” The author tries to avoid sexism, carefully referring to two of the creatures as “she,” but those two are also described in stereotypically less-ferocious terms than the male dinos. The touch point on the Pterodactyl is a soft section of wing. Readers are told that Diplodocus “loved splashing in swamps,” and the instruction is to “tickle her tummy to hear her growl,” implying that this giant creature was gentle and friendly. None of this may matter to young paleontologists, who will enjoy finding the tactile section on each creature that triggers the sound. Despite extensive directions in small print, most parents and libraries won't bother to change the battery secured by a tiny hex screw, but while the battery lasts, the book will get lots of play.

Young dino fans will enjoy it, though their grown-ups may not. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-58925-207-3

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: Aug. 5, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2016

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Innovative and thoroughly enjoyable.

ANIMAL SHAPES

You think you know shapes? Animals? Blend them together, and you might see them both a little differently!

What a mischievous twist on a concept book! With wordplay and a few groan-inducing puns, Neal creates connections among animals and shapes that are both unexpected and so seemingly obvious that readers might wonder why they didn’t see them all along. Of course, a “lazy turtle” meeting an oval would create the side-splitting combo of a “SLOW-VAL.” A dramatic page turn transforms a deeply saturated, clean-lined green oval by superimposing a head and turtle shell atop, with watery blue ripples completing the illusion. Minimal backgrounds and sketchy, impressionistic detailing keep the focus right on the zany animals. Beginning with simple shapes, the geometric forms become more complicated as the book advances, taking readers from a “soaring bird” that meets a triangle to become a “FLY-ANGLE” to a “sleepy lion” nonagon “YAWN-AGON.” Its companion text, Animal Colors, delves into color theory, this time creating entirely hybrid animals, such as the “GREEN WHION” with maned head and whale’s tail made from a “blue whale and a yellow lion.” It’s a compelling way to visualize color mixing, and like Animal Shapes, it’s got verve. Who doesn’t want to shout out that a yellow kangaroo/green moose blend is a “CHARTREUSE KANGAMOOSE”?

Innovative and thoroughly enjoyable. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: March 27, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-4998-0534-5

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Little Bee Books

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2018

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more