An optional purchase that can be used effectively in groups in schools or libraries.


What do tigers like to do at dinner parties?

A cautious mouse is getting ready to entertain a tiger and thinks that the key to its success is in a book entitled: How to Impress a Tiger. The mouse feels quite prepared, in spite of some early nervousness, and it puts a record on the turntable (wait—have young readers seen this device before?), mixes punch, and festoons its home with party decorations. When the tiger enters, the mouse roars, thinking “ ‘Rooooaaaarrrr!’ means ‘hello,’ ” and does as the book suggests: “When you say ‘Hello,’ put your hands up like claws and show your teeth. That is the polite greeting.” Unfortunately, the friendly tiger at the door is quite scared and screams in large letters: “AHHHHHHH!” She’s ready to turn tail, but the mouse immediately works to save the situation, consulting the manual once again and finding that now, somehow, the advice is just the opposite. The diligent host has been correct about the peanut-butter sandwiches but soon learns as well that greeting the tiger nicely and giving her the chance to play checkers and wear a polka-dot party hat will make her your friend for life. Heavy black outlines and flat blocks of color show off the mouse’s cozy home to advantage in what look like digital illustrations. The book’s tongue-in-cheek premise provides read-aloud fun and opportunities for some good roars.

An optional purchase that can be used effectively in groups in schools or libraries. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: April 9, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-06-256829-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Jan. 15, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2019

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Echoes of Runaway Bunny color this exchange between a bath-averse piglet and his patient mother. Using a strategy that would probably be a nonstarter in real life, the mother deflects her stubborn offspring’s string of bath-free occupational conceits with appeals to reason: “Pirates NEVER EVER take baths!” “Pirates don’t get seasick either. But you do.” “Yeesh. I’m an astronaut, okay?” “Well, it is hard to bathe in zero gravity. It’s hard to poop and pee in zero gravity too!” And so on, until Mom’s enticing promise of treasure in the deep sea persuades her little Treasure Hunter to take a dive. Chunky figures surrounded by lots of bright white space in Segal’s minimally detailed watercolors keep the visuals as simple as the plotline. The language isn’t quite as basic, though, and as it rendered entirely in dialogue—Mother Pig’s lines are italicized—adult readers will have to work hard at their vocal characterizations for it to make any sense. Moreover, younger audiences (any audiences, come to that) may wonder what the piggy’s watery closing “EUREKA!!!” is all about too. Not particularly persuasive, but this might coax a few young porkers to get their trotters into the tub. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: March 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-399-25425-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: Jan. 26, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2011

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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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