Tea for Ten

Lena Anderson, Author
Lena Anderson, Author R & S Books $15 (28p) ISBN 978-91-29-64557-6
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The cast of Tick-Tock makes a return engagement in this sweetly puckish counting book. Hedgehog, who's ""sitting in her kitchen feeling very lonely today,"" looks disconsolate as she rests her head on the table, her long snout pushing the tablecloth into disarray. Soon, there's a knock at the door, and in comes Uncle Will the rabbit (""Hurrah! Now we are TWO""). She smoothes out the tablecloth, adds a flower in a vase, and with each new guest, Hedgehog sets another teacup on her table. Before long, a most convivial group of 10 has assembled, including Duck, Pig, Teddy and a toddler named Lottie in a furry dog hood. Anderson's low-key couplets (""Another friend hops in./ With his legs he kicks./ Welcome, little Frog./ There's room enough for SIX"") and cozy vignettes will appeal to a preschooler's sensibilities, and judicious splashes of red perk up the soft, understated palette (Hedgehog's tiny red shoes and a red-and-white polka-dot teacup are particularly charming). A final glimpse of the band of friends, each one shown in a separate vignette, exiting in the order in which he or she arrived--with Hedgehog bringing up the rear--gives little ones a chance to make a final count of the tea party bon vivants. Ages 1-3. (Apr.)
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