The Tiptoeing Tiger

Philippa Leathers. Candlewick, $14 (32p) ISBN 978-0-7636-8843-1
Little Tiger bets that he is every bit as “sleek, silent, and totally terrifying” as his skeptical and intimidating older brother. But whenever the cub sneaks up on other jungle inhabitants and lets out a roar, the results are less than stellar. Boar hears him coming a mile away. “Was that meant to scare us?” ask the monkeys, laughing at his diminutive howl. Then Little Tiger spots his own roaring reflection in a pond, and decides that he is plenty scary—after all, he scares himself. Competency and mastery can be high-stakes topics in picture books, and Leathers’s low-key approach is refreshing. Her digitally assembled pencil-and-watercolor images are vividly populated and dashed with whimsy: each of the sneaking-up scenes shows Little Tiger in multiple exposures, playfully drawing out his attempts at stealth as he tiptoes toward his next unsuspecting “victim.” What’s especially nice is how Little Tiger accepts the realization that he’s scared of his own reflection with good humor and even pride: it’s not often that a hero of his ilk achieves such a level of self-awareness. Ages 3–7. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 11/20/2017
Release date: 02/06/2018
Genre: Children's
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