By Chloe Perkins. Illus. by Sandra Equihua.
Sept. 2016. 24p. Simon & Schuster/Little Simon, $8.99 (9781481479158); e-book, $8.99
(9781481479165). 398.2. PreS.
From the Once Upon a World series comes this Cinderella story set
in Mexico. Though it follows the original tale, Equihua’s digital artwork
stands out. Sharply delineated shapes in saturated colors create the feeling of collage while also blending motifs. For instance, pottery and cacti
decorate one page, while a pumpkin carriage is the focus of another.
Cinderella’s gown, reminiscent of a ruffled quinceañera dress, is a stunner. Other than the sturdiness of the pages, there is little that makes this
a traditional board book—the text is long and the pictures are quite
sophisticated, so choose your preschoolers wisely. —Ilene Cooper
Finding First Animals and More!
By Libby Walden. Illus. by Fhiona Galloway.
Sept. 2016. 12p. Tiger Tales, $12.99 (9781589252295). PreS–K.
This oversize lift-the-flap book will provide plenty of entertainment
for inquisitive readers. The text addresses the reader directly in a series of
engaging activities, encouraging them to “find the dog and mouse” in a
room filled with hiding pets, or explore farms and forests and discover
the types of animals that make their homes there. Other pages include
questions. One asks, “What sounds do these animals make?” and the
flaps, once lifted, reveal the noises made by seven cartoon animals. Another asks, “What will these animals be called when they grow up?” with
babies on the top flaps and adult animals below. Bright, bustling pages
will keep curious readers and animal-lovers busy. —Maggie Reagan
By Xavier Deneux. Illus. by the author.
Sept. 2016. 16p. Chronicle/Twirl, $12.99 (9791027601912). PreS–K.
Deneux (My Animals, 2016) crafts another touchable, interactive
board book, this time with a fantastical twist. In simple text, an unnamed narrator leads readers through a land of dreams. The dream
scenes are illustrated in black and cream, with red and green accents,
and each page contains plenty of eye-catching and tactile details. Shiny
mirrored sections and raised images are sure to attract toddler fingers,
while glow-in-the-dark elements add an extra layer of excitement.
Gently reassuring and just adventurous enough for a young audience,
this makes for a lovely bedtime story. —Maggie Reagan
My First Book of Animal Opposites.
By National Wildlife Federation.
Sept. 2016. 22p. illus. Imagine!, $6.95 (9781623540623). PreS.
For little ones, the selling feature here will surely be the numerous
glossy photos of animals. Double-page spreads show a veritable zoo
of mammals, birds, and reptiles exhibiting opposite characteristics.
There are all kinds of pairs, ranging from creatures of the same species (“Lion cubs are SMALL. Daddy lion is BIG”) to animals from
completely different genera (“Cheetah is FAST. Tortoise is SLOW”).
While some of these opposites are rooted in basic science, others
are more about something the critter in question is doing. Children
learning about opposites—and different kinds of animals—will have
a wild time with this variety of active beasts. —Maggie Reagan
My First Dance: Ballet.
Sept. 2016. 20p. illus. Sterling, $6.95 (9781454918738). PreS.
Each page in this attractive board book presents a ballet term accompanied by a color photo. The 20 entries include slippers, ballerina,
danseur, barre, first position, tendu, plié, and pas de deux. Pronunciations
accompany French terms. Depicting a racially diverse selection of girls
and boys, the photos show students with a wide range of expertise levels.
A typical illustration includes one or two dancers in a studio or against
a plain background. A fine choice for toddlers drawn to tutus, as well
as parents who want to share their love of dance. My First Dance: Tap
(2016) is an equally good companion volume. —Carolyn Phelan
Rainy Day: A Little Moral Story about Worry.
By Dan Yaccarino. Illus. by the author.
2016. 22p. Workman, $5.95 (9780761187356). PreS.
One morning, Glub-Glub, a blue mudskipper, looks out his bedroom window at the disheartening sight of rain. In fact, it made him
“worried about going outside.” Over several wordless spreads, readers watch Glub-Glub suit up—galoshes, hat, slicker, umbrella—and
step into the dreary, wet world. Nope: “Glub-Glub did not like the
rain.” But then he catches sight of his friends Clyde and Bink, who
are splashing around and having an amazing time. He hesitates only
a moment longer before casting his rain gear aside and joining in the
fun. Using only five short sentences and clean, digital illustrations, this
latest Happyland board book demonstrates how worry can be dispelled
by trying something new. —Julia Smith
Illus. by Virginie Graire.
2016. 12p. little bee, $6.99 (9781499802948). 516. PreS.
The title’s a dead giveaway here, but this board book’s creative use of
sturdy die-cut pages gives the subject matter panache. On each page,
cheerfully colored digital illustrations create a simple scene from which
a shape has been removed from the center. The square truck on the
cover morphs into a playroom block with the turn of the page. Next,
a rectangle takes the form of lighthouse, and so on. Circles, ovals, triangles, and a diamond all make an appearance, with the corresponding
shape name printed at the top. The cut-outs layer to create colorful
patterns within each shape that complement the scene as a whole. Engaging and inventive. —Julia Smith
Tinyville Town: I’m a Veterinarian.
By Brian Biggs. Illus. by the author.
Sept. 2016. 22p. Abrams/Appleseed, $7.95 (9781419721359). PreS.
Before she goes to work, Tinyville Town’s vet feeds her own menagerie
of animals. Then she bikes to her office, which is filled with waiting
patients. Flash the dog needs an X-ray, and sure enough, he’s swallowed
a sock. In an unlikely turn, his owner watches during the “simple operation,” but afterward, Flash is sent home with a clean bill of health. Told
in first person (you don’t learn the vet’s first name unless you read the
flap copy), this moves along quickly, features a multicultural cast, and
has plenty of dogs and cats to increase the cuteness factor. The characters
are as sturdy as the book’s pages. Publishing simultaneously are Tinyville
Town: I’m a Veterinarian and Tinyville Town Gets to Work —Ilene Cooper
Board Book Roundup