Trucks At First Sight (Martha Jaworowski)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Trucks At First Sight by Martha Jaworowski, a fun counting and seek-and-find book for young vehicle enthusiasts.

The day the unnamed narrator saw trucks for the first time, it was love at first sight! Taking readers on a visual trip through different types of large vehicles – such as logging trucks, forklifts, excavators, fire engines, and so on – in colorful and visually stimulating illustrations, the audience can find their own “truck at first sight.”

Clever theming with unique artwork. While the “story” and title concept are a little weak, Jaworowski makes up for this with incredibly well-designed visuals and text snippets starring each featured vehicle. The counting elements are well-integrated into the fun-to-read text, and the silhouetted artwork is complex and engaging without being overwhelming (though readers should be aware, due to the color scheme of most of the pages, in which the “findable” vehicles are a simply a darker shade of the same color used for the surrounding objects, this one will be a challenge for those with color-blindness). The length is perfect for a quick storytime, and JJ really enjoyed tackling the text and spotting the trucks. Overall, a great title for young gearheads, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the author in exchange for an honest review.)

10 Hungry Rabbits (Anita Lobel)

Hello, friends! Our book today is the 10th anniversary reprint of 10 Hungry Rabbits by Anita Lobel, a sweet and simple picture book of numbers, colors, and vegetables.

Ten little rabbits are very, very, VERY hungry! But there are no vegetables in the house for Mama Rabbit’s soup pot! Papa Rabbit encourages the ten little bunnies to head out to the garden and see what they can find. Each bunny finds a different veggie or berry, in increasing numbers and of various colors, allowing Mama and Papa to fix them all a delicious dinner.

Deliciously delightful. Sometimes the simplest concepts work the best, and this colorful combination of color, counting, and produce identification is a perfect example. Utilizing soft, folksy artwork and approachable text, Lobel creates an easy-to-read story for young bookworms that covers a trio of early-learning concepts. The oversized close-up illustrations of the vegetables are especially cool, as is the fact that both Mama and Papa Rabbit help to prepare the meal for their children. The length is great for a quick storytime, and JJ (an aspiring green thumb) really enjoyed this one. Overall, a lovely read, and we recommend it – Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

Mr. Pumpkin’s Tea Party (Erin Barker)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Mr. Pumpkin’s Tea Party by Erin Barker, a spooky and sweet counting book with a Halloween twist.

Mr. Pumpkin is having a tea party, a classy soirée with some ghoulish guests. Readers can count along as Mr. Pumpkin prepares the table, greets his guests and their delectable treats, and enjoys an evening of mingling, snacking, and entertainment.

Adorable. Mixing elements of the spooky and refined, Mr. Pumpkin’s tea party is a delightful event to watch unfold. The soft, whimsical illustrations never truly veer into scary or fearsome territory, presenting guests like a giant spider (Madam Silk, who brings seven truffles) or a rather dapper mummy (Dr. Cairo, who comes bearing a bouquet of nine spindleweeds) as festively unusual friends rather than frightening creatures. The rhyming text is simple, with occasional touches of extravagant word choice to keep with the tone. Young readers can count along within the artwork on each page, from one to thirteen (especially amusing to JJ, who gleefully pointed out that clocks don’t REALLY go to 13), as the progression from a fall dusk to evening is beautifully expressed through the color palette and charming characters. This was great for a short storytime, and we both loved it. A Halloween teatime treat, and Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

Pride 1 2 3 (Michael Joosten)

Hello friends, and happy Pride! Our book today is Pride 1 2 3, written by Michael Joosten and illustrated by Wednesday Holmes, an exuberant counting book centered around the festivities of Pride.

While many public Pride celebrations have been cancelled this year due to COVID, this joyful board book introduces the youngest readers to the message and importance of Pride through the simple 1 to 10 counting book format. From “1 parade in the month of June” to “10 waving flags fly brightly with pride”, little ones can get a peek at a warmly illustrated Pride celebration that features DJs, divas, motorcycles, floats, signs, and a beautifully diverse display of intersectionality. After all, Pride is all about coming together and celebrating what makes the LGBTQ+ community special, with hope, love… and pride.

Wonderful! Bursting with visual excitement and positivity, this sweet title pulls double duty as a primer for the annual celebration of the LGBTQ+ community and a solid counting book. Each countable feature (people, flags, floats, signs, etc.) are clearly defined, even in the riot of color featured in the endearing, Roger Priddy-esque illustrations. The diversity of the cast is phenomenal, featuring characters across the spectrum of LGBGTQ+ of a multitude of skintones and ability. My only minor complaint is on the final spread, which features a group flying a multiple of Pride flags; some of the flags used are outdated versions, and some do not appear at all. Otherwise, this is a gentle, fun, and inclusive title that was just a blast to read. The length was perfect, JJ loved it, and we highly recommend it. Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

One Fox: A Counting Book Thriller (Kate Read)

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Hello, friends! Our book today is One Fox: A Counting Book Thriller by Kate Read, an exciting book of numbers for little readers.

One (1) famished fox has two (2) sly eyes, and the wily creature spots three (3) plump hens. As this barnyard thriller unfolds, we follow the dastardly fox as it plots against the hens, aiming to procure their five (5) delicious eggs. It sneaks into the henhouse that night, and the hens are started by ten (10) sharp teeth! Will this counting adventure end in tragedy? Or is there something in even greater numbers that awaits…

Colorful and clever. Read composes her simple yet entertaining story – with a wickedly funny twist – using a judicious economy of language, confining each page to a number, a descriptor, and the subject. It keeps things easy for the smallest reader while combining some core concepts of vocabulary and counting to build on. The colorful, collage-art style illustrations are pleasantly reminiscent of Carle, and burst with visual excitement against the simple backgrounds. And not to worry – the terrified chickens and their eggs make it out unharmed. The length was great, and JJ was delighted by the action and suspense of the story. This will definitely be a fresh favorite for young bookworms, and we recommend it. Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)