A familiar story and illustrations enhanced with interactivity give this classic new life.

ONCE UPON A POTTY - BOY

Interactive and entertaining, this 1975 classic that has been introducing kids to the potty for years adapts well to the iPad, integrating amusing sound effects, interesting use of page transition and even a sing-a-long.

The app is available in both male and female versions, and the differences between the two are limited to the anatomically obvious and slight variations in color. In both texts, the child’s mother is the primary narrator, pouring on the enthusiasm as she energetically cheers on Prudence or Joshua (depending on the edition). A gender-neutral child’s voice is heard throughout and is used effectively as a teaching tool, especially when tapping illustrations of the child. An early page introduces the child’s body, and a tap of the child’s head announces "head"; the critical body parts are "pee-pee" and "little hole," regardless of gender. However, some body parts, such as the belly button, trigger musical sound effects that are silly but not informative, which helps to keep the instructional tone light. Additional sound effects, which are activated by tapping various objects, lean toward the comical. For example, a tap of the potty elicits cheers and fanfare when the child finally succeeds in appropriately using it. Finally, where possible, tapping objects in the illustrations highlights the text word as it is pronounced.

A familiar story and illustrations enhanced with interactivity give this classic new life. (iPad storybook app. 1-3)

Pub Date: May 31, 2011

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Oceanhouse Media

Review Posted Online: June 12, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2011

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Perfect for Valentine’s Day, but the syrupy sweetness will cloy after the holiday.

THE ABCS OF LOVE

Animal parents declare their love for their offspring in alphabetical order.

Each page displays an enormous capital letter, one line of verse with the keyword capitalized, and a loving nonhuman parent gazing adoringly at their baby. “A is for Always. I always love you more. / B is for Butterfly kisses. It’s you that I adore.” While not named or labelled as such, the A is also for an alligator and its hatchling and B is for a butterfly and a butterfly child (not a caterpillar—biology is not the aim of this title) interacting in some way with the said letter. For E there are an elephant and a calf; U features a unicorn and foal; and X, keyed to the last letter of the animal’s name, corresponds to a fox and three pups. The final double-page spread shows all the featured creatures and their babies as the last line declares: “Baby, I love you from A to Z!” The verse is standard fare and appropriately sentimental. The art is cartoony-cute and populated by suitably loving critters on solid backgrounds. Hearts accent each scene, but the theme of the project is never in any doubt.

Perfect for Valentine’s Day, but the syrupy sweetness will cloy after the holiday. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-7282-2095-6

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Sourcebooks Wonderland

Review Posted Online: Jan. 27, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2021

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This will have readers putting on their dancing shoes to do the “cha cha cha” with their dino-babies

DINOSAUR DANCE!

It's not the first time dinosaurs have been featured in a clever Boynton board book. It seems she—and we—can't get enough.

As her fans know, Boynton has a sly wit that respects the intelligence of her young fans and amuses the adults asked to “read it again.” In this book she introduces nine dinosaurs, each of which dances in a way that seems totally appropriate for that particular species. “The blue Stegosaurus goes SHIMMY SHIMMY SHAKE. / The red Brontosaurus goes QUIVERY QUAKE.” Drawing on her experience as a children’s musician, she writes a text that trips along like a song with rhymes that make sense but don't intrude. The illustrations, typical Boynton, reflect her greeting-card background. They are cartoonish but manage to capture the unique personality of each creature. The unnamed dinosaur narrator looks genuinely distraught at not being able to name the “tiny little dino” that “goes DEEDLY DEE.” Spoiler alert: the tiny little dinosaur is probably Compsognathus and would be about the size of a small chicken. Young dinophiles would be impressed if the dinosaurologists in their lives could supply that factoid, but alas, they will have to look it up.

This will have readers putting on their dancing shoes to do the “cha cha cha” with their dino-babies . (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 30, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4814-8099-4

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Oct. 12, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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