cover image Do Pigs Have Stripes?

Do Pigs Have Stripes?

Melanie Walsh. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH), $15 (15pp) ISBN 978-0-395-73976-1

In this playful animal name-game, first-time picture book author Walsh poses obvious but entertaining questions and answers sure to elicit giggles from the preschool set. Each sequence requires two spreads: the first displays just a bit of a mystery beast (""Does a bird have a big black wet nose?""), and the turn of a page provides a complete picture of the animal (""No, a dog does.""). Walsh varies the queries slightly to avoid repetition (""Are these the feet of a pussycat?... No, they belong to an elephant.""), and just as readers get used to answering ""No,"" the volume's final question (""Does a giraffe have a long thin neck?"") takes an affirmative response. Walsh favors solid colors, visible brush strokes and a minimum of detail; an alligator's saw-edged green tail brightens against a complementary deep-red backdrop. Such bold, basic images can be seen at a distance, and the hand-printed black lettering is large enough to display to a reading group. Walsh's words and pictures demonstrate considerable wit, despite the simplicity of their presentation. Ages 4-7. (Mar.)