ROADSIGNS

A HAREY RACE WITH A TORTOISE

Proud Hare gets his comeuppance again, this time leading (at least until the end) slow-but-steady Tortoise along a winding, mostly paved road liberally endowed with large, standard cautionary and directional signs. In a near absence of narrative text, it’s the signs, as much as Haskamp’s spread filling, neatly brushed acrylics, that tell the tale; while Tortoise toils along past cheerleaders brandishing even more signs (“Go Tortoise,” “Bad Hare Day”) and multiple road hazards, Hare takes wrong turns, can’t tell the ladies’ room from the men’s at a “Rest Area,” is diverted by a passing “Circus Train,” and puffs up to the “Finish Line” just too late. Younger readers will find both visual jokes and plenty of reading practice in the pictures—and as a double lagniappe, not only is the race’s entire course laid out on the endpapers, but many of the signs are reprised (with discreet explanations for the more obscure) on the final page. Open this engaging debut for the illustrator and there’ll be “No Stopping.” (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2000

ISBN: 1-890817-23-6

Page Count: 40

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2000

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Between its autumn and field-trip themes and the fact that not many books start countdowns from 20, this may find its way to...

PUMPKIN COUNTDOWN

A class visits the pumpkin patch, giving readers a chance to count down from 20.

At the farm, Farmer Mixenmatch gives them the tour, which includes a petting zoo, an educational area, a corn maze and a tractor ride to the pumpkin patch. Holub’s text cleverly though not always successfully rhymes each child’s name within the line: “ ‘Eighteen kids get on our bus,’ says Russ. / ‘But someone’s late,’ says Kate. / ‘Wait for me!’ calls Kiri.” Pumpkins at the tops of pages contain the numerals that match the text, allowing readers to pair them with the orange-colored, spelled-out numbers. Some of the objects proffered to count are a bit of a stretch—“Guess sixteen things we’ll see,” count 14 cars that arrived at the farm before the bus—but Smith’s artwork keeps things easy to count, except for a challenging page that asks readers to search for 17 orange items (answers are at the bottom, upside down). Strangely, Holub includes one page with nothing to count—a sign marks “15 Pumpkin Street.” Charming, multicultural round-faced characters and lots of detail encourage readers to go back through the book scouring pages for the 16 things the kids guessed they might see. Endpapers featuring a smattering of pumpkin facts round out the text.

Between its autumn and field-trip themes and the fact that not many books start countdowns from 20, this may find its way to many library shelves. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: July 1, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-8075-6660-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Whitman

Review Posted Online: May 16, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2012

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Part of a spate of books intent on bringing the garbage collectors in children’s lives a little closer, this almost matches...

TRASHY TOWN

Listeners will quickly take up the percussive chorus—“Dump it in, smash it down, drive around the Trashy town! Is the trash truck full yet? NO”—as they follow burly Mr. Gilly, the garbage collector, on his rounds from park to pizza parlor and beyond.

Flinging cans and baskets around with ease, Mr. Gilly dances happily through streetscapes depicted with loud colors and large, blocky shapes; after a climactic visit to the dump, he roars home for a sudsy bath.

Part of a spate of books intent on bringing the garbage collectors in children’s lives a little closer, this almost matches Eve Merriam’s Bam Bam Bam (1995), also illustrated by Yaccarino, for sheer verbal and visual volume. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: April 30, 1999

ISBN: 0-06-027139-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1999

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more