WALK ON!

A GUIDE FOR BABIES OF ALL AGES

“Is sitting there on your bottom getting boring?” asks an unseen narrator of a roly-poly tot with one curl on his head, followed by the announcement, “It is time to learn how to walk!” Beginning with the instructions to stand up, Frazee centers said baby’s bottom smack in the middle of a double-paged spread, head peering over it and legs akimbo. From there, it’s all instructions and laughs as page by page he’s is encouraged to walk by selecting appropriate support, pulling himself to a standing position, balancing, breathing and just letting go. And falling down. And having a good cry. Running down the all-important sock, shoe and diaper check, is vital as well. Simple retro-style cartoon-like illustrations in black pencil and gouache use spot art to feature the toddler in yellow booties acting out the directions while quizzically and determinedly taking those all important first steps. Clever use of bold fonts plays up the tongue-in-cheek text and adds to the fun. Frazee’s saucy invitation to all generations to “walk on” has just enough kick and sass to incite action in babies (and grown-ups) everywhere. (Picture book. 1-3)

Pub Date: April 1, 2006

ISBN: 0-15-205573-8

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2006

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Another branded entry that offers little beyond the minimum requirements.

TRICK OR TREAT, POUT-POUT FISH

From the Pout-Pout Fish Mini Adventure series

The Pout-Pout Fish brand expands.

Halloween is here, and Mr. Pout-Pout Fish is giving out treats from his submarine home. Those familiar with the blue striped fish will find the usual uncluttered illustrations and rhyming scheme (“Who’s at the helm / of the spooky submarine? // It’s you, Mr. Fish! / Have a happy Halloween!”). New readers may be drawn in by the colorful costumes the various fish wear as they trick-or-treat along the ocean floor. Keen-eyed readers with some pumpkin-carving experience may wonder how a jack-o’-lantern can be lit under water. This board book is a fairly standard look at Halloween, putting a popular character in common holiday trappings and adding nothing else. Fans of the holiday will have to look elsewhere for a more exciting take on Halloween’s thrills.

Another branded entry that offers little beyond the minimum requirements. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 9, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-374-30191-0

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: Aug. 30, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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Hits just the right note for fans of the series and newcomers alike.

DOGGIE GETS SCARED

From the Leslie Patricelli Board Books series

A stuffed dog (and his baby) are afraid until they realize they have each other.

Patricelli’s instantly recognizable baby—White, still perpetually diaper clad, still with but one hair—from Bigger! Bigger! (2018) and many more is back with an adorable purple stuffed animal named Doggie. From swimming pools to strangers, Doggie gets pretty scared. The baby provides the pup lots of reassurance (including time with baby’s blankie) so that in the end, neither one is too afraid anymore. Adult readers will get a kick out of the fact that Doggie’s fears are actually the baby’s fears. What’s more, readers see the baby trying many of the same calm-down tactics on the stuffed canine that caregivers use on children. Both this device and the first-person narration are clever tools that will play well with little readers who likely share many of the same fears. The black-outlined images stand out against bold, saturated backgrounds, drawn with just enough detail to be interesting but not too busy. The simplicity of the illustrations doesn’t prevent Patricelli from conveying emotion, from the baby’s panic at possibly losing Doggie to the caregiver’s palpable relief at having found it. All of the characters present White save a few background figures. Patricelli’s rhyming Mad, Mad, MAD features the baby expressing anger and ultimately using techniques to work through it.

Hits just the right note for fans of the series and newcomers alike. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Sept. 8, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-5362-0379-0

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Oct. 27, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2020

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