Budding explorers may find inspiration for their own gatherings and maps.

MAGNOLIA’S MAGNIFICENT MAP

From the Walnut Animal Society series

The six members of the Walnut Animal Society are gathering for their monthly Society Soirée, but will Magnolia the Bunny be finished with her presentation in time?

All the friends are pitching in to help with the setup, and all are excited…except for Magnolia. It’s taken months for the rabbit cartographer to explore and gather photos for her latest map, but there’s still a blank spot right in the middle. Margaux the Kitty offers to accompany Magnolia on her final foray, but the mountain they find in the map’s blank spot is steep and rather daunting. How will they reach the top? Luckily, Chester the Raccoon’s fishing hole is partway up the slope, and together the three friends push, pull, and boost one another to the top, where they find a magnificent waterfall and a perfect swimming hole. After enjoying the water, Magolia finishes just in time for the soirée, where she impresses all her friends with her map of their favorite places. Bradshaw’s follow-up to Henry’s Bright Idea (2016) extends her line of handmade stuffed toys. The anthropomorphized characters are drawn with long limbs and simple faces, their eyebrows and mouths carrying much of the emotional weight. It can be difficult, however, to tell species from the illustrations, especially Ruthie the Deer. Indeed, aside from coloration and the shape of the ears, all the heads are identical.

Budding explorers may find inspiration for their own gatherings and maps. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: April 17, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-944903-12-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Cameron + Company

Review Posted Online: Jan. 22, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2018

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Hee haw.

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THE WONKY DONKEY

The print version of a knee-slapping cumulative ditty.

In the song, Smith meets a donkey on the road. It is three-legged, and so a “wonky donkey” that, on further examination, has but one eye and so is a “winky wonky donkey” with a taste for country music and therefore a “honky-tonky winky wonky donkey,” and so on to a final characterization as a “spunky hanky-panky cranky stinky-dinky lanky honky-tonky winky wonky donkey.” A free musical recording (of this version, anyway—the author’s website hints at an adults-only version of the song) is available from the publisher and elsewhere online. Even though the book has no included soundtrack, the sly, high-spirited, eye patch–sporting donkey that grins, winks, farts, and clumps its way through the song on a prosthetic metal hoof in Cowley’s informal watercolors supplies comical visual flourishes for the silly wordplay. Look for ready guffaws from young audiences, whether read or sung, though those attuned to disability stereotypes may find themselves wincing instead or as well.

Hee haw. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: May 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-545-26124-1

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Dec. 29, 2018

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An adorable adventure in cartography.

CAMILLA, CARTOGRAPHER

An exercise of spatial thinking through a snowy forest.

Camilla the warthog collects maps. Maps of stars, New York, even the London Tube. She even owns an ancient map of her forest. Unfortunately for her, she believes all lands have been explored and there is nothing new to chart. However, with a snowy morning comes a new opportunity. When her hedgehog neighbor, Parsley, asks for her help in finding the creek, Camilla quivers with excitement when she realizes the snow-covered land “is uncharted territory.” With all landmarks covered in snow, Camilla and Parsley must use their spatial-reasoning skills and a compass to find a new way to the creek. Their trailblazing journey proves a challenge as they keep bumping into trees, rocks, and walls. But when they find the creek, Camilla will have all the information and tools ready to draw out a new map, to break out in case of another snowfall. Wood’s delightful illustrations and Dillemuth’s expertise in the matter engage readers in the woodland creatures’ adventures. In addition, Dillemuth, who holds a doctorate in geography, provides activities in the backmatter for parents and caregivers to help children develop their own spatial-reasoning skills, such as sketching and reading maps or using cardinal directions.

An adorable adventure in cartography. (author’s note) (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Oct. 8, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-4338-3033-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Magination/American Psychological Association

Review Posted Online: July 14, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2019

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