The Odd One Out

Britta Teckentrup. Candlewick/Big Picture, $14.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-7636-7127-3
Teckentrup, creator of hide-and-seek books like Animal 123 and Animal Spots and Stripes, asks readers to scan pleasingly patterned images for an "odd one out." More than 50 pandas tumble across a page, for instance, all but one clutching a stick: "In among all of/ this hullaballoo,/ which panda has lost/ its shoot of bamboo?" Identically posed two-hump camels stand in five measured rows: "Can you see a camel/ with just one bump?" Teckentrup's mod block-print graphics, reminiscent of Laura Ljungkvist's stylized work, present dizzying crowds of creatures—seals, lemurs, penguins, and butterflies among them. If the pictures are altogether charming, inconsistent verb agreement mars the poems; although "A large group of tortoises/ passes on by" and "a cloud of bats/ comes out looking for fun," a "dazzling shoal of fish/ under the sea/ are keeping a secret" and "A cartload of monkeys/ spin around and around." Readers will solve some puzzles handily, while other games pose a comparative challenge, making these visuals compelling through several rounds of play. Ages 2–5. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 03/03/2014
Release date: 03/11/2014
Genre: Children's
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