Tusk! Tusk!

Anne Mitra, Author, Annie Mitra, Author Holiday House $13.95 (1p) ISBN 978-0-8234-0819-1
This didactic tale concerns a young elephant who awakens on the morning of his birthday with a toothache. When Alligator arrives and escorts Elephant to the dentist, they find Rhino, Rooster and Rabbit waiting to see him too. Dentist cautions the young elephant to care for his teeth or he may wind up like Lion, with ``a mouth full of cavities,'' or like Warthog, ``who ate so much candy that his teeth fell out!'' While helpfully pointing to a wall chart that depicts a tooth's structure, the dentist advises on proper hygiene habits. Mitra's bold, batik-like paintings deserve a better story line; parents searching for utilitarian introductions to the evils of tooth decay would do better with Fred Rogers's factual A Visit to the Dentist or the reliably humorous and reassuring The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist. Ages 4-7. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/29/1990
Release date: 09/01/1990
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