Those who appreciated Caparo’s illustrations in the original edition will also like this sequel and will probably overlook...

RUDOLPH SHINES AGAIN

In this sequel to the original story about the famous reindeer with a glowing red nose, Rudolph loses his special power and then gains it back after helping find two lost bunnies.

In the month before Christmas, Rudolph suffers a crisis of confidence and loses the red glow that has made him the leader of Santa’s reindeer team. He worries and whines, concentrating on his loss, finally deciding to run away and find a new home in a different country. Deep in a forest at night, he finds a group of distressed rabbits who have lost two of their babies. Rudolph helps them, finding bunnies Donnie and Doris, and in focusing on the troubles of others, he regains his confidence as well as the glow on his nose. He flies home in time for Christmas Eve deliveries, including a special package dropped from Santa’s sleigh for his new rabbit friends. Caparo’s handsome illustrations in an oversize format are in the same style as his work in the recent edition of the original story, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (2014). The color palette focuses on deep midnight blues with swirls of pink sparkles around Santa and the reindeer symbolizing their magical powers. The long, rhyming text, however, is dated in tone and has a grating, singsong quality and some rhymes that fall flat. It’s unfortunate that the text is not of the same quality as the illustrations, design, and high-quality paper.

Those who appreciated Caparo’s illustrations in the original edition will also like this sequel and will probably overlook the unsuccessful story. (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 22, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-4424-7499-4

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Aug. 12, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2015

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Young readers will hunt out this enjoyable crowd pleaser again and again.

WE'RE GOING ON A GOON HUNT

Hunt for a bear? That’s so yesterday.

On a spooky Halloween night, we’re hunting for…a green GOON. We’re not really scared. Let’s start in a pumpkin patch. We can’t go over or under it, so we’ll just go through it. We’ll do the same in other likely goon hideouts: a swamp, a tunnel, a forest, a graveyard, and, finally, a haunted house. In this atmospheric “petrifying parody” of We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, a dad and his four kids, dressed in Halloween finery and accompanied by their costumed pup, search for the elusive quarry. They become more frightened (particularly dad and pooch, even from the outset) as they proceed along the increasingly murky path—except for the youngest, unicorn-outfitted child, who squeals a delighted welcome to whatever creature unexpectedly materializes. As in the classic original, evocative sound effects (“Gurgle hiss, gurgle hiss, gurgle hiss!”) ring out as the quintet moves through each hazard. Unsurprisingly, the group locates the goon, forcing them to retrace their steps home in a frenzied hurry, odd noises and all. They reach safety to discover…uh-oh! Meanwhile, someone’s missing but having a ball! Even readers who’ve never read or heard about the bear expedition will appreciate this clever, comical, fast-paced take. The colorful line illustrations are humorously brooding and sweetly endearing, with the family (all members present White) portrayed as growing steadily apprehensive. (This book was reviewed digitally with 8.5-by-20.8-inch double-page spreads viewed at 74.6% of actual size.)

Young readers will hunt out this enjoyable crowd pleaser again and again. (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: Aug. 18, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-984813-62-6

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: July 14, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2020

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Skip this well-meaning but poorly executed celebration.

I LOVE DADDY EVERY DAY

Children point out the things they love about their fathers.

“Daddy is always kind. He gives us support and shelter when things go wrong.” A child with a skinned knee (and downed ice cream cone) gets a bandage and loving pat from Daddy (no shelter is visible, but the child’s concerned sibling sweetly extends their own cone). Daddy’s a storyteller, a magician, supportive, loyal, silly, patient, and he knows everything. A die-cut hole pierces most pages, positioned so that the increasingly smaller holes to come can be seen through it; what it represents in each scene varies, and it does so with also-variable success. The bland, nonrhyming, inconsistent text does little to attract or keep attention, though the die cuts might (until they fall victim to curious fingers). The text also confusingly mixes first-person singular and plural, sometimes on the same page: “Daddy is like a gardener. He lovingly cares for us and watches us grow. I’m his pride and joy!” Even as the text mixes number the illustrations mix metaphors. This particular gardener daddy is pictured shampooing a child during bathtime. Más’ cartoon illustrations are sweet if murkily interpretive, affection clearly conveyed. Troublingly, though, each father and his child(ren) seem to share the same racial presentation and hair color (sometimes even hairstyle!), shutting out many different family constellations. Más does, however, portray several disabilities: children and adults wearing glasses, a child with a cochlear implant, and another using a wheelchair.

Skip this well-meaning but poorly executed celebration. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: March 24, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-12305-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Rodale Kids

Review Posted Online: March 18, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2020

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