cover image No More, Por Favor

No More, Por Favor

Susan Middleton Elya, illus. by David Walker, Putnam, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-399-24766-8

Eight young rainforest creatures rebel against their single-item diets in this linguistically and graphically cheerful story that picky eaters of the human variety should well appreciate. Elya’s (Adiós, Tricycle) spry verse balances English and boldface Spanish words, placing the latter in easily deciphered context (an illustrated glossary/pronunciation guide is also included). The creatures’ parents have no luck persuading their offspring to eat their customary fare. A toucan complains that pomegranates have too many seeds, an iguana insists that mangos are too sweet, and a quetzal proclaims avocados “too squishy and squashy and green.” In gauzy, acrylic paintings ablaze with tropical hues, Walker (Your Daddy Was Just Like You) humorously conveys the contrasting moods of cajoling parents and their unyielding young. The rhyme scheme is occasionally simplistic or clunky, though there’s a pleasing irreverence in many couplets (“Three times each día, it’s always the same./ Please, not that flower, Papá. It’s so lame!”). Creative parental problem solving brings the finicky eaters together for a merry feast, where they discover the rewards of sharing and experimenting. Ages 3–5. (June)