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December 3, 2009 Edition
Juneau kids have their first plane rides early in life and this short little book offers parents the chance to prep kids for the experience. There’s a lot that adults take for granted about flying: loud planes, security checkpoints, and even walking through the jetway, but here they are highlighted so unsuspecting young travelers are ready for them. The fun parts, like onboard movies and snacks get a mention, too, as does the happy arrival and meeting with relatives. Pictures showing a cheerful boy and his reassuringly cheery parents travelling to see relatives are accompanied by easy-to-read couplets, perfect for reading aloud.
In Irene’s multi-species house where humans, cats, dogs, and ducks play basketball together, there is a sudden chill brought on by a runaway alligator from the zoo. Though Max the duck champions the alligator, whose name is Harold, the irrepressible duck has got some quick-talking to do to help his roommates see beyond Harold’s many sharp teeth and big appetite, especially when they hear why the alligator is on the lam. Fortunately, Harold is anxious to stay out of trouble and hides quite well when the zoo detective shows up. The next morning after making sure Harold eats a good breakfast, Max comes up with a plan for the next time the detective comes by. And when he does, everyone gets a nice surprise! Urbanovic is especially good at capturing the animals’ expressions in this colorful and warm book about helping those in need.
Arathusela really doesn’t want to go to bed, but her mom and dad sure do. So Arathusela comes up with an idea: what if she put them to bed tonight instead? To her surprise, her parents agree, and she starts the bedtime routine by interrupting their favorite show with requests for pajamas and teeth-brushing. When they argue over what book she should read them, Arathusela chooses one herself. After they go potty, her mom and dad want a drink, and then they want kisses and hugs and a song! Boy, bedtime is tough! After tucking her mom and dad into bed, Arathusela draws for a while, but soon finds she’s lonely. What should a big girl who’s in charge do?
Five words and bright cartoony drawings are all that are needed to tell the very simple story of a dad pushing his daughter on a swing, higher and higher. How high does the girl swing? Higher than a giraffe! Higher than an airplane! She swings so high that she gives a high-five to a little space alien on a swing, before she swings back to earth… ready to do it again!
Baby Bear is cranky and tired and doesn’t want to go to bed. With his father’s prompting, though, he gives his mother a “big bear kiss” to start the bedtime routine, but, “No kiss for Daddy!” So, Daddy bundles him up the stairs, offering giraffe kisses and koala kisses, plops him in the bath with a crocodile kiss, breezes through tooth-brushing with tiger kisses, and finally snuggles him into bed with mouse-whisker kisses. The engaging nearly photo-realistic pictures show Baby Bear’s inability to maintain a grump against Daddy Bear’s good-natured jollying-along, and keen eyes will spot a variety of animals in the background. And as every parent hopes, Daddy Bear’s perseverance earns him a prize: a big bear hug from his baby bear.