Zip and Bip have the touch to zap fun into early reading.


From the Adventures of Zip series

A fun and bouncy adventure for the earliest readers.

Join Bip and Zip, two pea-green, antennaed extraterrestrial cartoon friends (or siblings), for another in the Adventures of Zip series. Bip, wearing a diaper, is the younger and smaller of the two. A zap from Zip causes Bip to begin to grow. At first, Bip grows to be just as large as Zip, and the two play ball. Zip wins and smugly celebrates the triumph. But a delighted Bip continues to grow, ballooning until Bip is several times larger than Zip—and also somehow becoming light enough to blow away, rising into the stratosphere. Zip is helpless to save Bip. “Zip’s zaps are much too low!” Eventually, Bip effectuates a zap without Zip, becomes small again, and falls back toward Zip. But what luck! When Bip falls, the still-smiling being lands on a ball and is lucky enough to bounce up, up, up again and complete an amazing twisting triple somersault before safely landing. In the end as Bip takes a bow, Zip is forced to declare Bip the “best by far!” Prefacing this stand-alone story are boxes of word families, sight words, and bonus words to practice or review before reading. Most illustrations are compositionally simple, positioning Zip and Bip against plain white backgrounds, and most pages contain just one or two short rhyming sentences. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Zip and Bip have the touch to zap fun into early reading. (Graphic early reader. 4-6)

Pub Date: Aug. 31, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-5344-8928-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Simon Spotlight

Review Posted Online: June 16, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2021

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


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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A quiet, warm look at the bond between grandfather and grandson.


After a visit, an African-American grandfather and grandson say farewell under a big yellow moon. Granpa tells Max it is the same moon he will see when he gets home.

This gently told story uses Max’s fascination with the moon’s ability to “tag along” where his family’s car goes as a metaphor for his grandfather’s constant love. Separating the two relatives is “a swervy-curvy road” that travels up and down hills, over a bridge, “past a field of sleeping cows,” around a small town and through a tunnel. No matter where Max travels, the moon is always there, waiting around a curve or peeking through the trees. But then “[d]ark clouds tumbled across the night sky.” No stars, no nightingales and no moon are to be found. Max frets: “Granpa said it would always shine for me.” Disappointed, Max climbs into bed, missing both the moon and his granpa. In a dramatic double-page spread, readers see Max’s excitement as “[s]lowly, very slowly, Max’s bedroom began to fill with a soft yellow glow.” Cooper uses his signature style to illustrate both the landscape—sometimes viewed from the car windows or reflected in the vehicle’s mirror—and the expressive faces of his characters. Coupled with the story’s lyrical text, this is a lovely mood piece.

A quiet, warm look at the bond between grandfather and grandson. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: June 13, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-399-23342-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: March 13, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2013

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