The follow-up to the long-lived and much-loved Peek-a-Who? (2000) is finally here.
As with the first book, a game of peekaboo plays out through die-cut holes that allow readers a glimpse through one right-hand page to the next. Only a patterned coat, a feathered head or pair of eyes is visible through the hole. The words “Peek-a” and the partial image are an invitation to guess, and the page turn reveals the entire creature. The animals are typical zoo animals, and either their names or some attribute rhymes with the “Boo” (a kangaroo mommy/joey dyad, a cockatoo, a tiger that “mews” and a panda that chews on “bamboo”). On one of the final pages, part of a Mylar mirror is visible through the hole with a sign reading “Please feed the animal!” hanging below, clipped to what looks like bars on a cage. When the page is turned, a nearly full Mylar panel is revealed with the complete phrase “Peek-a / you, too!” now visible. Laden’s boldly colored gouache art, which has the look of prints, uses the signature style found in the original.
While the first book executed this gimmick more successfully (there are only so many words that rhyme with “Boo”), this companion title is a welcome pairing.(Board book. 6 mos.-2)