cover image Beware of Tigers

Beware of Tigers

Dave Horowitz, Author, Dave Horowitz, Illustrator . Putnam $12

The adage "forewarned is forearmed" rings true in this charming tale that appeals to the stubborn inner child in everyone. Horowitz (The Ugly Pumpkin ) speaks volumes through a marriage of rhyming, witty text and wacky illustrations, especially the clever die-cut cover of this paper-over-board book, literally showcasing a tiger's open mouth. When birds-of-a-feather friends Chirp and Burp receive news of the imminent arrival of a tiger, they choose to ignore the sage advice of a fellow bird ("Listen... if you wish to be healthy and live a long while;/ Always beware of a tiger who smiles!"). Horowitz's less-than-subtle humor shines forth with newspaper headlines trumpeting the tiger's appearance, plastered all over the windows of the very bus on which he rides, and the striped cat's halo as he vows never to eat the quivering birds. Once the beaked buddies realize his true intentions, the birds suddenly get smart ("It just goes to show you can't trust your eyes, for a tiger who smiles will also tell lies"). Until the arrival of the next predator…. Parents of children who must always see things for themselves will surely appreciate this knowing tale. Ages 4-up. (Oct.)