cover image Shoe Shoe Baby

Shoe Shoe Baby

Bernard Lodge. Random House Books for Young Readers, $14.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-375-81084-8

The title of this flighty and flippant paper-over-board volume by a father-daughter team refers to both the narrator and her shoe store. ""Hello! My name is Shoe Shoe Baby. I come from a great family of shoe mad, shoe people,"" she remarks, before introducing seven customers (one for each day of the week). Homesick for ""the sun and the sea and the waving palms,"" Conchita from Costa Rica is thrilled with her new footwear: platform shoes decorated with tropical images, including miniature palm trees sprouting from the toes ("" ` Ay fant stico!' she cried for joy. `Shoes with a view!' ""). A ballerina who longs to leap higher, a boy who wants to be taller than his older brother and a cowboy in search of ""some speedy boots"" also number among the clients that the heroine outfits with outlandish foot gear. Laced with quirky details, the vividly hued, stylized art delivers some comical images (Shoe Shoe Baby's store and bed are both shoe-shaped). Yet the author stretches the concept a bit too thin and interjects obvious word play into his narrative, which may strike readers as more hokey than clever. Ages 5-8. (Sept.)