From the hammer on the cover that readers can “swing” to the treehouse door little ones can open and close, the interactive...

BIZZY BEAR'S BIG BUILDING BOOK

From the Bizzy Bear series

Bizzy Bear and his gang of helpful critter friends build a treehouse together, while readers operate various tools. 

Larger than other titles in the Bizzy Bear series, the book also offers an interactive element on each page. Flaps become the doors of vehicles and the lids of tool boxes; a sliding panel moves a saw back and forth or allows readers to manipulate a measuring tape; a spin dial on the side of the book activates a power drill and more. The simple prose describes the actions of Bizzy Bear and company in one or two sentences. Oversize, digital images of the titular bear in lively scenes keep the project moving along to the playful conclusion, which is revealed with a sliding panel: The treehouse actually doubles as a rocket ship, with Bizzy Bear peeking out of the upper porthole. While the flaps may not last more than a dozen readings, the sliding panels are strong and sturdy. The saw is difficult to manipulate, however, as it is evidently serrated for verisimilitude, and may require some adult intervention. 

From the hammer on the cover that readers can “swing” to the treehouse door little ones can open and close, the interactive elements steal the show. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-7636-7395-6

Page Count: 10

Publisher: Nosy Crow/Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Sept. 3, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2015

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There is always room in the Easter basket for a counting book, and many readers may appreciate having another simple,...

TEN EASTER EGGS

A cheerful brown bunny hiding behind the edges of an Easter basket looks just as surprised as young children will be to find the chicks revealed as each egg “hatches.”

With help from a reading partner, young children are encouraged to count down the eggs as they disappear with each page turn. Alternatively, they can count up as the chicks are revealed. A simple phrase at the top of each right-hand page states the number of eggs in the basket. The line at the bottom (half of a rhyming couplet) tells how many chicks readers should look for. The numbers are spelled out, requiring young children to recognize the word instead of the more familiar numeral. On the left-hand page, the spaces previously occupied by an egg begin to fill with meadow plants and critters, eventually becoming a scene as busy and cheerful as a greeting card. This book begs to be touched. Each egg is made of shaped plastic that protrudes through die-cut holes on the verso; they can be pressed but seem to be securely anchored. The pastel chicks are lightly flocked, providing an additional tactile experience. Although the pages are thicker than paper, young fingers may find the holes a convenient way to grip (and possibly tear) the pages.

There is always room in the Easter basket for a counting book, and many readers may appreciate having another simple, nonreligious holiday book. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Jan. 27, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-545-74730-1

Page Count: 22

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Nov. 4, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2015

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While the ghoulies here are more cute than scary, “jump,” “quiver,” and “run” will probably get across the idea to even the...

HALLOWEEN ABC

An abecedary of spooky or autumnal delights for the littlest readers.

Each letter of the alphabet is highlighted on a single page, the upper- and lowercase letters appearing in the upper left-hand corner, while the object is named at the bottom or in the upper right. Ho keeps her illustrations simple and places them against plain, brightly colored backgrounds, keeping them accessible to those still learning about Halloween’s many icons. The almost-fluorescent orange cover is sure to attract attention, and the palette of black, purple, orange, yellow, and radioactive green enhances the Halloween mood. But while many of the chosen items will be expected—bats, ghost, haunted house, owl, skeleton, vampire, witch, zombie—others are rather odd choices. J is for “jump,” not jack-o’-lantern (“pumpkin” is illustrated with a jack-o’-lantern); K is for a mostly black “kitten” standing in a coffin; and N is for “nightmare,” which is virtually impossible to express visually for this age group without provoking said nightmare. Here, a lavender-skinned child (zombie?) in pajamas and nightcap has arms raised and mouth open wide in surprise—perhaps in response to the mummy across the gutter? The tough letters use “quiver,” spider-decorated “underpants” on a monster, and “extra treats,” the x underlined.

While the ghoulies here are more cute than scary, “jump,” “quiver,” and “run” will probably get across the idea to even the youngest listeners that Halloween can be scary. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: July 18, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-7636-9527-9

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Nosy Crow/Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Aug. 7, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2018

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