cover image Max and Bird

Max and Bird

Ed Vere. Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-4926-3558-1

Max, the black kitten introduced in Max the Brave, makes a new friend in Bird, but can birds and kittens be friends? “It’s a rule of nature. Birds get chased by kittens,” Max tells Bird, who has no interest in being chased or becoming a snack. “But friends don’t eat each other up!” protests Bird. Instead, they resolve to learn how to fly, resulting in a trip to the library and lots of ineffectual flapping on the part of both animals (Bird eventually gets the hang of it). Vere’s pared-down cartooning keeps the focus on this developing friendship (the two friends, both inky black with huge white eyes, appear against brightly colored, mostly empty backgrounds), and his droll narration (“They flapped in the morning. Not a bean. They flapped in the afternoon. Not a sausage”) provides lots of laughs along the way. Ages 3–6. (Sept.)