Practice for those who are learning colors or patience on a rainy day.

RAINDROPS TO RAINBOW

A young child names colors and finds ways to pass the time before a rainy day finally becomes sunny.

Children likewise stuck inside will surely empathize with the protagonist as they await the sun: “I want a calm, clear, BLUE sky day, / so I can go outside and play. / I miss the YELLOW summer sun. / I miss the laughter. Miss the fun.” Gray, green, brown, white, blue and gray (both repeats), and orange each make an appearance as Mom helps the child pass the time and calms them during the thunder and lightning. Finally, the rain stops, and the duo don red rain boots and head outside, where they discover a rainbow. The child names each color, starting with violet, and then it’s time to head inside for bed. The rhyming text mostly scans well, with just a few stumbles in meter. The names of each color are capitalized and printed in the appropriate hue, and the pictures will give readers clues as well; the yellow rug in front of the couch, for example, looks just like the sun. The child wears large white glasses and has long brown hair with a giant bow on the top of their head. Their skin is slightly darker than their redheaded mother’s pale skin; a family portrait on the bedroom wall hints at a multiracial family. (This book was reviewed digitally with 10-by-20-inch double-page spreads viewed at 29.6% of actual size.)

Practice for those who are learning colors or patience on a rainy day. (Picture book. 2-6)

Pub Date: March 2, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-593-22409-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Penguin Workshop

Review Posted Online: Dec. 25, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2021

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

As ephemeral as a valentine.

LOVE FROM THE CRAYONS

Daywalt and Jeffers’ wandering crayons explore love.

Each double-page spread offers readers a vision of one of the anthropomorphic crayons on the left along with the statement “Love is [color].” The word love is represented by a small heart in the appropriate color. Opposite, childlike crayon drawings explain how that color represents love. So, readers learn, “love is green. / Because love is helpful.” The accompanying crayon drawing depicts two alligators, one holding a recycling bin and the other tossing a plastic cup into it, offering readers two ways of understanding green. Some statements are thought-provoking: “Love is white. / Because sometimes love is hard to see,” reaches beyond the immediate image of a cat’s yellow eyes, pink nose, and black mouth and whiskers, its white face and body indistinguishable from the paper it’s drawn on, to prompt real questions. “Love is brown. / Because sometimes love stinks,” on the other hand, depicted by a brown bear standing next to a brown, squiggly turd, may provoke giggles but is fundamentally a cheap laugh. Some of the color assignments have a distinctly arbitrary feel: Why is purple associated with the imagination and pink with silliness? Fans of The Day the Crayons Quit (2013) hoping for more clever, metaliterary fun will be disappointed by this rather syrupy read.

As ephemeral as a valentine. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Dec. 24, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5247-9268-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Penguin Workshop

Review Posted Online: Feb. 2, 2021

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Plotless and pointless, the book clearly exists only because its celebrity author wrote it.

YOUR BABY'S FIRST WORD WILL BE DADA

A succession of animal dads do their best to teach their young to say “Dada” in this picture-book vehicle for Fallon.

A grumpy bull says, “DADA!”; his calf moos back. A sad-looking ram insists, “DADA!”; his lamb baas back. A duck, a bee, a dog, a rabbit, a cat, a mouse, a donkey, a pig, a frog, a rooster, and a horse all fail similarly, spread by spread. A final two-spread sequence finds all of the animals arrayed across the pages, dads on the verso and children on the recto. All the text prior to this point has been either iterations of “Dada” or animal sounds in dialogue bubbles; here, narrative text states, “Now everybody get in line, let’s say it together one more time….” Upon the turn of the page, the animal dads gaze round-eyed as their young across the gutter all cry, “DADA!” (except the duckling, who says, “quack”). Ordóñez's illustrations have a bland, digital look, compositions hardly varying with the characters, although the pastel-colored backgrounds change. The punch line fails from a design standpoint, as the sudden, single-bubble chorus of “DADA” appears to be emanating from background features rather than the baby animals’ mouths (only some of which, on close inspection, appear to be open). It also fails to be funny.

Plotless and pointless, the book clearly exists only because its celebrity author wrote it. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: June 9, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-250-00934-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Feiwel & Friends

Review Posted Online: April 15, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2015

Did you like this book?

more