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by Xavier Deneux ; illustrated by Xavier Deneux

Pub Date: March 25th, 2014
ISBN: 978-2-84801-943-7
Publisher: Twirl/Chronicle

This French import is an encyclopedic exploration of the world of a 2-year-old bunny named Jojo.

On thinner-than-normal board pages, readers learn about Jojo and his family, Jojo’s house, his neighborhood and other places he visits, and various animals. Each section is divided by a tabbed page of thick paperboard. Deneux’s graphically simple and appealing cartoons on mostly white backgrounds in warm and inviting colors are the attraction here. Everyday objects are recognizable without being boring. The disjointed animal section is the least successful, and the spider and octopus as well as many insects have incorrect numbers of legs. The text, set in a difficult-to-read scriptlike type, consists of short sentences describing the scene (there is no story here) and captions just below the objects and animals. The whole package sports a thick paperboard “house” glued to the front cover, and a handle made of cord is fastened to the spine. These gimmicks undoubtedly triggered the choking-hazard symbol (indicating that the book is inappropriate for children under 3) found on the back of the book, despite the suggestion right above it that reads “Ages 18 months and up.”

Here’s hoping Deneux can find a more developmentally appropriate package for his accessible cartoons.

(Board book. 3-4)