ALL ABOUT FROGS

Usually a naturalist among naturalists, Arnosky (One Whole Day: Wolves, not reviewed, etc.) stumbles with this somewhat careless primer. Though in his green-tinged pictures he depicts a range of North American and tropical frogs, often life-sized, as well as their prey, predators, and stages of development, otherwise-anatomically-exact amphibians sport nether regions that look airbrushed, and every creature is labeled until the “predators” page—on which the turtle is represented only by a hard-to-recognize head. Furthermore, to state that “All amphibians are cold-blooded. They warm up in the sun and cool off in the shade” isn’t particularly enlightening, and there are neither pronunciation guides for the scientific terms, nor any leads to sources of further information. Budding biologists will take a longer leap with Judy Hawes’s new edition of Why Frogs Are Wet (2000). (Picture book/nonfiction. 6-7)

Pub Date: March 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-590-48164-9

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2002

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PAULINE

Pauline (32 pp.; $16.00; Oct. 5; 0-374-35758-7) The illustrator of Kate Banks’s many books (The Bird, the Monkey, and the Snake in the Jungle, p. 62, etc,) goes solo for a tale that proves children’s suspicion that bigger isn’t always better. Pauline, a fuzzy-eared weasel, is an unlikely heroine, but her courage and dramatic talents combine to save her best friend Rabusius the elephant, trapped by hunters. The thick bold lines and lush colors of the illustrations infuse the story with an excitement and immediacy that will appeal to preschoolers. The spreads are presented from a weasel’s-eye-view are particularly captivating and reinforce Pauline’s small stature and mighty impact. (Picture book. 3-6.)

Pub Date: Oct. 5, 1999

ISBN: 0-374-35758-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 1999

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TINY GREEN THUMBS

Guest debuts in children’s books with a story of intergenerational love, focusing on the gardening efforts of two small animals. With the expert guidance of Ganny Bun, Tiny Bun and his friend, Little Mouse, learn how to create, care for, and grow a garden. Under Ganny’s tutelage, the duo learn of the six elements necessary for a garden: soil, seed, water, sun, time, and love. Together the novice gardeners prepare the soil, select and plant a plethora of seeds, and water the seedlings. When Tiny Bun, balking at the seemingly endless wait for results, asks Ganny Bun what he should do until the plants are ready, she shows him how he can turn his ordinary thumbs into tiny green thumbs. After doing all the weeding and caring for the plants, Tiny Bun discovers that his little thumbs are indeed green (and brown too, from all the weeds and dirt) and a bountiful vegetable garden awaits him for harvesting. Guest imbues the tale with genuine passion for the art of gardening and all things leafy and green. Krupinski’s lush illustrations, meticulously detailed and overflowing with an abundance of flora, depict the verdant beauty of a summer garden in all its glory. Interspersed throughout the text are simple, child-friendly directions for engaging in the pleasures of gardening. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: March 1, 2000

ISBN: 0-7868-0516-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Hyperion

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2000

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