cover image Make It, Break It

Make It, Break It

Ann Turnbull. Viking Children's Books, $12.95 (320pp) ISBN 978-0-670-83359-7

Its curious title notwithstanding, in only one of the three scenarios included in this book is something made and then broken. In the first pages, a brother and sister are seen at the beach, building a sandcastle that they then raze, jumping on it delightedly. Next, the two are shown picking up a bedroom: ``Now our room is clean. Let's play in it!'' Finally, the siblings help their mother make a cake. When it is done, the children sit down at a table and eat it. That is the extent of the disappointingly meager story line, which is relayed in unevenly rhymed verse (``Pick up blocks, crayons, puzzles-- / All the toys are in a muddle!''). The book's saving grace is the cheerful art provided by McTaggart, who portrays the two toddler terrorists as round-faced and gently animated. Ages 3-8. (Nov.)