Ten Go Tango

Arthur Dorros, Author, Emily Arnold McCully, Illustrator HarperCollins $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-06-027690-4
Dorros's (Abuela) toe-tapping title cuts a rug among counting books. As the band plays on, various members of a vibrant animal cast take to the dance floor. One osprey dances ballet, two toucans do a two-step and so on, up to 10 flamingos that tango. Along the way, bears cha-cha, foxes fox-trot and rhinos rumba until the joint is really jumpin'. Dorros's imagery--a smooth blend of playfulness and grace--provides McCully (Rabbit Pirates; Mirette on the Highwire) with the perfect starting point for her stylish and acrobatic characters. From the osprey, who is a swirl of tutu, plumage and toe shoes, to the gallant walrus couple waltzing on the book's jacket, McCully's fluid watercolors soar. She has left her usual lush backgrounds behind, here bringing the dancing menagerie to center stage on crisp white pages. The penultimate spread features a gatefold that opens into a ballroom brimming with the affable beasts. Especially notable are the bright, fine frocks and accessories worn by all. Ages 3-6. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 04/03/2000
Release date: 04/01/2000
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