Here’s hoping for many more titles in this excellent series.

NO MORE TANTRUMS

From the Big Kid Power series

A companion to Bye-Bye Binky and I Use the Potty (both 2016) aims to help little kids take charge of big feelings.

The cover art, rendered digitally in a limited palette of coral, brown, black, and white, contradicts the title right off the bat, as it depicts a child of color with light brown skin and shoulder-length, black, straight hair in midtantrum, her mouth agape, limbs rigid, eyes screwed tight, and tears shooting outward. The first-person text looks back to “When I was little and I didn’t get my way, I cried.” An accompanying series of pictures shows her making demands in various stages of a tantrum. She really loses control when her father, depicted with similar coloring and short, black hair, denies her a cupcake. At the height of her fit, the text shifts to the present tense and asks, “Do I still throw tantrums?” This prompts a page turn that signals how she’s found ways to calm herself, since “BIG KIDS DON’T THROW TANTRUMS.” She “take[s] a little break,” she takes deep breaths in and out, or she might get a hug from her dad. When he tells her again that she must wait for a cupcake, she good-naturedly says “A BIG KID’s gotta try!” A satisfying vignette in the backmatter note to caregivers shows her rewarded with a treat after all.

Here’s hoping for many more titles in this excellent series. (Picture book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Nov. 7, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-4521-6289-8

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Chronicle Books

Review Posted Online: Aug. 27, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2017

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Likely to be popular with young Pete the Cat fans and parents seeking a gentle introduction to preschool.

PETE THE KITTY'S FIRST DAY OF PRESCHOOL

From the Pete the Cat series

The popular character enjoys storytime, painting, and a snack on the very first day of preschool.

The younger incarnation of Pete the Cat packs his backpack that he picked out from the store himself, gets a snack from his mom, and rides the school bus with his big brother, Bob (who isn’t much bigger than Pete, sizewise). At school, Pete meets his stylish teacher, Mrs. Lopez, and fellow feline classmates while keeping his signature cool. The day ends with Pete declaring: “Preschool is awesome! Pete loves everything!” James Dean’s big-eyed cats populate the simply drawn scenes that look as though they were painted in preschool-esque fashion with thick swaths of tempera. At a couple of moments (when he eats his banana and declares it tasty and when he sings along) his customarily expressionless face actually breaks into a smile. Kimberly Dean’s text is uninspired, but it’s in sync with the upbeat tone of the series. Pete’s preschool experience, while not particularly realistic, is a highly positive one; refreshingly, there is no trace of the separation anxiety or anxiousness found in many first-day-of-school books.

Likely to be popular with young Pete the Cat fans and parents seeking a gentle introduction to preschool. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: June 1, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-06243582-8

Page Count: 24

Publisher: HarperFestival

Review Posted Online: July 24, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2019

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A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an...

I AM A BIG BROTHER

A little boy exults in his new role as big brother.

Rhyming text describes the arrival of a new baby and all of the big brother’s rewarding new duties. He gets to help with feedings, diaper changes, playtime, bathtime, and naptime. Though the rhyming couplets can sometimes feel a bit forced and awkward, the sentiment is sweet, as the focus here never veers from the excitement and love a little boy feels for his tiny new sibling. The charming, uncluttered illustrations convincingly depict the growing bond between this fair-skinned, rosy-cheeked, smiling pair of boys. In the final pages, the parents, heretofore kept mostly out of view, are pictured holding the children. The accompanying text reads: “Mommy, Daddy, baby, me. / We love each other—a family!” In companion volume I Am a Big Sister, the little boy is replaced with a little girl with bows in her hair. Some of the colors and patterns in the illustrations are slightly altered, but it is essentially the same title.

A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an older sibling can do to help. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Jan. 27, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-545-68886-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: March 17, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2015

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