cover image Friendshape


Amy Krouse Rosenthal, illus. by Tom Lichtenheld. Scholastic Press, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-545-43682-3

Rosenthal’s cheerful observations about friendship provide punny setups for longtime teammate Lichtenheld’s (Duck! Rabbit!) visual jokes, all composed with four happily smiling shapes: a blue circle, a yellow square, a red rectangle, and a green triangle. The book is well-suited for an adult and child to work through together as they read each sentence, one per spread, and see where Lichtenheld’s shape play leads. For “Friends make you feel at home,” the triangle sits on top of the square to create a house, while the red rectangle lies in front of it. “We rolled out the red carpet for you!” the square tells the blue circle. Sometimes there’s a rebus to decode, as when the yellow square completes the phrase “Friends play fair and [square].” “Friends sometimes think the exact same thing at the exact same time” shows each shape thinking about an identical photograph of a banana. It’s upbeat entertainment, and a natural lead-in both to conversations about friendship and to creative activities using cut-out shapes of one’s own. Ages 3–5. Agent: Amy Rennert, Amy Rennert Agency. (Aug.)