Returning to the electric color contrasts of Growing Vegetable Soup (1987), a new Caldecott Honor winner (for Color Zoo, 1989) presents an innovative counting book with gorgeous, wildly colored fish-that-never-were against a deep blue ground. An almost-invisible black fish (and text) presages the next number before each page turn ("2 jumping fish plus me makes 3"). Having the fish's eyes punched out not only adds a bit of see-through fun but allows tactile counting to reinforce the learning experience. A visually exciting book that will probably inspire children to draw imaginative fish of their own.

Pub Date: March 1, 1990

ISBN: 0152280510

Page Count: 44

Publisher: Harcourt, Brace

Review Posted Online: April 24, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 1990

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With minimal text and bright-color illustrations, Crews captures the essence of a plane journey."Boarding. . . Take off. . .Flying over cities. . .Flying into the clouds. . . Time to head down. . ."—the brief captions are hardly needed to accompany the 16 double-spread illustrations showing a small, propeller, driven plane on its way from city to city, day to night. With buildings and vehicles resembling simple wooden toys, the bold, sunny illustrations can be "read" by the youngest. Crews' style has become familiar, through several fine books; this is a worthy companion to the award-winning Freight Train and Truck.

Pub Date: Oct. 20, 1986

ISBN: 0688092357

Page Count: 36

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Review Posted Online: April 19, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 1986

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A disappointing twist on a popular theme. More gimmick than engaging.


From the I Can Learn! series

This noisy board book is designed to thrill tots fascinated with all things construction.

A tactile backhoe digger is center stage on each of the five cutout pages, complete with flaps. Brief rhyming text describes the machine’s actions as it works throughout the day. Animal characters engaged in manual labor or operating other machinery—a bulldozer, crane, road roller, and dump truck—describe more work that goes on at a construction site in small speech bubbles. Finding the mouse in every scene adds to the fun. On each page, a little bird sporting a hard hat invites young builders to press various parts of the silicone digger to activate a range of distinct sounds. The digger’s track pad sounds different from the sound of its arm moving dirt. The problem is that the digger itself is passive; the track pad and arm don’t actually move. The machine stays in the same place on every spread. The caution light beeps but doesn’t light up. Savvy kids will quickly realize that all the sounds are accessible from the first spread without having to turn the pages. The sound is the most engaging part of the book, but with only five sounds, this feature won’t hold most youngsters’ attention for long.

A disappointing twist on a popular theme. More gimmick than engaging. (Novelty board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Sept. 7, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-68010-684-8

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: Dec. 3, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2021

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