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Review of Bird Builds a Nest

Bird Builds a Nest [A First Science Storybook] by Martin Jenkins; illus. by Richard Jones Preschool, Primary    Candlewick    32 pp.    g 2/18    978-0-7636-9346-6    $16.99 Striking mixed-media illustrations, collage-like and muted with earth tones, depict a burnt-orange sun rising in the east and a bird perched on a tree branch, perfectly representing the opening sentence of […]

Review of Buster and the Baby

Buster and the Baby by Amy Hest; illus. by Polly Dunbar Preschool    Candlewick    32 pp.    g 12/17    978-0-7636-8787-8    $15.99 In a rhythmic text and lively art, a classic friendship story plays out through an extended game of hide-and-seek between a baby and a small white dog named Buster. Buster carefully determines the best hiding places […]

When the weather outside is frightful…

A little imagination can go a long way towards alleviating snow-day cabin fever. These wintry picture books celebrate thinking outside the box (or, in one case, thinking a box into outer space), making them perfect companions to preschoolers’ indoor imaginative play. In their third outing, Chirri & Chirra: The Snowy Day, Kaya Doi’s rosy-cheeked (and, […]

Review of Snow Scene

Snow Scene by Richard Jackson; illus. by Laura Vaccaro Seeger Preschool    Porter/Roaring Brook    40 pp. 11/17    978-1-62672-680-2    $17.99 At first glance, this is the simplest of books for very young children. Short questions, many just two or three words long, are posed, with answers provided by turning the page. The art often gives hints (on […]

Review of When Sophie Thinks She Can’t…

When Sophie Thinks She Can’t… by Molly Bang with Ann Stern; illus. by Molly Bang Preschool    Blue Sky/Scholastic    40 pp.    g 1/18    978-1-338-15298-2    $17.99 Each of the Sophie books (When Sophie Gets Angry — Really, Really Angry…, rev. 3/99; When Sophie’s Feelings Are Really, Really Hurt, rev. 9/15) helps children come to terms with emotions […]

Review of Ducks Away!

Ducks Away! by Mem Fox; illus. by Judy Horacek Preschool    Scholastic    32 pp.    g 1/18    978-1-338-18566-9    $16.99 Fox and Horacek (Where Is the Green Sheep?, rev. 5/04) team up again in this silly, cheerful counting book for the very youngest. When a mother duck waddles onto a bridge, she’s followed by her five ducklings — […]

Try, try again

Sometimes persistence is the key to success, as demonstrated by the following picture book characters who try, try again. In Molly Bang’s latest Sophie book, When Sophie Thinks She Can’t… (written with Ann Stern), our blonde-pigtailed heroine is working on a tangram puzzle when her older sister comes by and casually solves it (“Too bad […]

Review of Little i

Little i by Michael Hall; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Greenwillow    48 pp. 9/17    978-0-06-238300-6    $17.99 A cross between a quest story and a 
concept book, Hall’s (Red: A Crayon’s Story, rev. 1/15) latest picture book launches when Little i’s dot falls off and into the sea. Little i boards a boat appropriately shaped […]

Review of Sam, the Most Scaredy-Cat Kid in the Whole World

Sam, the Most Scaredy-Cat Kid in the Whole World by Mo Willems; illus. by the author Preschool    Hyperion    48 pp. 9/17    978-1-368-00214-1    $17.99 As fans of Leonardo, the Terrible Monster (rev. 9/05) will remember, monster Leonardo’s buddy Sam is “the most scaredy-cat kid in the whole world.” In this sequel, Sam and Leonardo meet another […]

Review of Lines

Lines by Suzy Lee; illus. by the author Preschool    Chronicle    32 pp. 9/17    978-1-4521-5665-1    $17.99 The front endpapers show a pencil and eraser on a blank page. The main story begins with a solitary figure skater tracing a crisp line across the ice. What follows are wordless pages of elegant choreography as the skater launches […]