cover image Do Bunnies Talk?

Do Bunnies Talk?

Dayle Ann Dodds. HarperCollins Publishers, $15 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-06-020248-4

Dodds, author of On Our Way to Market and Wheel Away! , offers a rhyming text that is certain to regale young listeners with its opportunities for histrionic reading: ``Snakes HISS / Lips SMACK''; ``Big bass drums / go BOOM BOOM BOOM.'' She also addresses an issue of importance to more than a few curious children learning to talk, many of whom begin to identify animals by the sounds they make: What noise does the bunny make? Does it talk? Her ultimate answers don't satisfy, however, and Dubanevich's illustrations, which seem intended to echo graphically the lively words, might confuse literal-minded children--mice look crazed; bolts of lightning have eyes; a snake seems to crawl across the sky. The bright, almost neon colors (including blue cows and green ghosts), random exclamation points and geometric shapes also jangle unnecessarily. Older children will probably scratch their heads over this title, but younger ones may enjoy the sounds and noises the text occasions. Ages 3-6. (Feb.)