London, Jonathan, and Gilles Eduar. Here Comes Doctor Hippo. Honesdale, Pa: Boyds Mills Press, 2012. Print.
I’m always amazed at animals that expertly mimic human behavior, and Dr. Hippo sure reminds me of countless boys and girls that have taken heartbeats, checked tonsils and conducted minor surgery all in the name of make-believe fun.
This fun–filled adventure is just the thing for parents to share with their emerging readers. Not only is the book predictable, but also it encourages vocalization and bonding. This is sure to be a bedtime favorite for many sessions even if it inspires much play beforehand. The story is solid in all the ways that children’s books should be and Eduar’s art is the perfect match for this tale providing its own predictability and easily understood interpretations.
Parents and libraries collecting early childhood literature can feel confident adding this to their collection knowing that it will become a favorite of kids and adults reading together and building relationships.
Suzanne Bloom has gifted her readers with a surprise that creates a friendly threesome – Fox, Goose, and Bear. Goose and Bear continue proving in this fourth installment that friendship is made through the give-and-take of the moment.
Kids of all ages love surprises, and so does Bloom’s trio. The tension that is created speaks to a common situation- someone feels left out. Although this is not a book for the holidays, it is a book that could easily be adapted to those circumstances where gift giving seems to be an expected behavior. And gifts that are handmade are special at any time of the year. But Bloom’s characters suggest that the real gift is the process in the closing line, “Let’s do it again!”
The closing line of the book shows great insight into the joy that children (and some of us adults) experience with many things. To “do it again” means many different things and it may even be repeated over and over till it grows old. To capture and recapture the joy and surprise of the unknown being made known is at the core of learning.
Parents and librarians serving early childhood populations will want to make sure to have this title available for early print experiences. The illustrative content also expresses joy and surprise in ways that will be identified by a young audience. But, heed this warning: be prepared to pull out the craft paper, scissors, glue and glitter to craft some of those gifts that will fill a memory box. This book will inspire creation, and with creation comes learning and sharing with others which makes life much more enjoyable.