cover image JAMBOREE DAY


Rhonda Gowler Greene, , illus. by Jason Wolff. . Scholastic/Orchard, $15.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-439-29310-5

Jungle animals dance, sing and quaff coconut milk cocktails in this rhyming holiday spree. A tree frog issues the invitations, hippos, a lion and an eland stream in and the fun begins. Backed by a rollicking cha-cha rhythm ("Hippo twirled on her tip-tippy toes,/ while Frog slip-slid down Elephant's nose./ Spider tapped on eight hairy legs,/ Rhinoceros juggled ostrich eggs"), Green's (Barnyard Song) lightly constructed story line builds to a climax with a jazz concert, then winds down to bedtime quiet. ("Then... sun sank low. Shadows fell./ The jungle climbed out of its jamboree spell"). Newcomer Wolff's festive double-page, full-bleed acrylics show jauntily-hatted gorillas and anteaters enjoying rides on a toy train; the young ones let go of their balloons in their excitement. Festive Chinese lanterns hang over the party grounds, and the guests dig into banana splits. The celebration ends with a tear and a sniffle for one over-emotional hippo, but young party-lovers will enjoy attending this celebration over and over again. Ages 4-6. (Nov.)