What Does Little Crocodile Say? (Little Crocodile #1)

Eva Montanari. Tundra, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-7352-6813-5
In this story told largely in sounds, the first day of school is an aural banquet for an expressive bright green croc in rosy-red overalls. The day begins with familiar home onomatopoeia (“The zipper goes zzzt”), but when confronted with a new environment, the crocodile clings to its mother and emits a sound of its own: “WWWWAAH!” (Adult readers will note that the croc’s caretaker sheds a few earnest tears, too.) Happily, though, an attentive elephant teacher, new friends representing a panoply of species, and a wealth of sound-rich classroom activities (“The trumpet goes Pah-Pa-Rah,” as the class marches behind their tireless teacher) convinces the protagonist that school is cool. Montanari’s economic, softly textured pencil crayon drawings and intimate, inventive vignette framings (a bird’s-eye view of multispecies nap time is endearing and funny) provide plenty to linger over, and deliver the gentle persuasion that reluctant, or sensorially sensitive, preschoolers need. Ages 2–5. (June)
Reviewed on : 06/24/2021
Release date: 06/08/2021
Genre: Children's
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