cover image Frogs Jump; A Counting Book

Frogs Jump; A Counting Book

Alan Brooks. Scholastic, $15.95 (1pp) ISBN 978-0-590-45528-2

The animal stars of this oversized, cumulative counting book engage in activities that certainly sound normal enough: seven geese honk, eight monkeys swing, nine spiders spin, etc.). But as Kellogg's illustrations show, the animals are performing these feats in anything but the customary manner: the geese are honking horns, the monkeys swing golf clubs, the spiders hang from a spinning carousel. When the count reaches 12, debut author Brooks at last acknowledges the joke: ""Twelve whales blow soap bubbles./ What? Whales don't blow soap bubbles!"" Counting back down again, he points out the incongruities along the way (""Pelicans don't fish with poles"") in a preschooler-pleasing isn't-this-silly voice. To these festivities Kellogg contributes a magical top hat, from which the animals are conjured forth, and a host of other giddy details. Though Brooks has a clever concept, ultimately it is Kellogg's exuberantly imagined art, nimbly rendered in his characteristically sunny colors, that counts most. Ages 3-6. (Oct.)