While the book is not an effective color primer, the youngest Star Wars fans will enjoy the large images of their favorite...

STAR WARS

COLORS

Creatures, characters and objects from the Star Wars saga represent different hues.

Each double-page spreads focuses on one color and features stills from the nine films. The iconic characters are here—Luke Skywalker in an orange flight suit, brown-furred Chewbacca, green Yoda, white-armored stormtroopers and black-garbed Darth Vader. Lesser-known creatures and objects help fill in the other shades, such as the yellow N-1 starfighter and blue Max Rebo. The color is named on each spread in a bold, 3-D type, and one sentence lets readers know who or what it is being depicted: “The Royal Guards wear red.” Little ones unfamiliar with the Star Wars universe will find many of the masked and extreme close-up faces (Yoda reaches menacingly out of the page) scary in this 9-inch-square offering. While many of the colors are bold and true, particularly gold C-3PO, others are a bit of stretch. Queen Amidala’s ship looks more purple than silver, and the MagnaGuard’s electrostaff does not look purple at all.

While the book is not an effective color primer, the youngest Star Wars fans will enjoy the large images of their favorite characters. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Nov. 26, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-545-60919-7

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Dec. 7, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2014

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An amusing and lively read that celebrates a venerable literary form.

KNOCK KNOCK

A bear desperate to hibernate seeks refuge from neighbors.

A big brown bear is dressed in pajamas and ready to turn in for winter when suddenly: “KNOCK KNOCK.” “Who’s there?” asks the bear. “Justin the neighborhood and thought I'd stop by!” responds a fox bearing an arm full of firewood, and thus begins a series of knock-knock jokes that brings more and more woodland neighbors into the bear’s home. The bear grows increasingly frustrated as the illustrations grow ever more frantic, the compositions filled with animals bearing party supplies, food, and gifts. Eventually it is revealed that the bear’s neighbors are merely wishing their friend a safe and happy hibernation, and readers as well as the grouchy bear will find their hearts warming as a tiny chipmunk embraces its leg, proclaiming, “Al miss you all winter long.” Little readers will enjoy the narrative Sauer builds on these knock-knock jokes, and the repetition of the format will encourage them to create some of their own. The dynamic illustrations pop with color and noise, juxtaposing nicely with the bear in PJs who’s clearly desperate for some shut-eye. The end goal of sleep makes this a nice bedtime read-aloud, particularly for little readers who may be resisting the end of the day, even as the giant, red “KNOCK KNOCK”s encourage raucous storytime participation.

An amusing and lively read that celebrates a venerable literary form. (Picture book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 31, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-338-11694-6

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: April 16, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2018

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A fishy tale that doesn't quite swim in the crowded sea of concept books

BIG FISH LITTLE FISH

From the My Little World series

A mix of marine-life fact and fiction introduces opposites.

With its iconic shape, the eye-catching cover cutout of a bright-orange fish is instantly appealing. Layered die cuts of decreasing size provide texture and handholds for little fingers and form the bodies of varying species of fish. Information about fish habits and habitats is crammed into wordy rhymes with the opposing terms in boldface, but the accuracy of those facts is debatable. Though it’s fair to call the eel “long and very wiggly,” contrasting it with a generic, short yellow fish that’s a rhyme-forced “giggly” introduces a jarring anthropomorphism. In fact, stereotypical human emotions or motivations are attributed to the fish on almost every page. On another page, the slow fish (the only fish not painted with a smile) says, “Even with a big head start, I knew I'd finish last”—a distressingly defeatist message in an otherwise cheery board book. Inexplicably, the final spread depicts all the fish in party hats—turning it into a birthday book. While this may extend its use in day cares, it doesn't help young children learn opposites.

A fishy tale that doesn't quite swim in the crowded sea of concept books . (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: March 1, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-58925-215-8

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: April 13, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2016

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