cover image Deep Down Underground

Deep Down Underground

Olivier Dunrea / Author MacMillan Publishing Company $13.95 (3

This cumulative counting book has an unusual theme and lovely art. ``Deep down underground / 1 wee moudiewort digs and digs / deep down underground.'' (``Moudiewort'' is the Scottish word for mole.) Two pink earthworms ``wriggle and wrangle'' out of the way ``when they hear one wee moudiewort digging.'' So do three big black beetles, who ``scurry and scamper,'' and four furry caterpillars, which ``scooch and scrunch, '' all in an intricate rhythm. Dunrea's pen-and-ink and watercolor illustrations show the black, pink-nosed mole deepening his hole and, embedded in the earth, all kinds of little bones and buttons, rocks and stones. The various creatures trying to escape include toads, spiders, garter snakes, mice; finally, 10 ants scurry. Then the moudiewort sneezes, the round stops and the whole series is counted back down to one. The cross-section view of the world below-ground is an added attraction--and may serve to introduce its denizens as interesting creatures worthy of attention. Ages 4-7. (Sept.)