cover image Out and about

Out and about

Shirley Hughes / Author HarperCollins Publishers $16 (48p) ISB

The British author-artist's new entry in the Nursery Collection will captivate parents and children, as do all her inimitable celebrations of family life. Bright, exuberantly detailed paintings illustrate rhyming lines featuring a small girl and her wobbly baby brother as they experience the special features of the passing seasons. The book begins with the siblings throwing themselves wholeheartedly into glorious mud on the first spring day. Later, the two join in communal activities as neighbors are all ""out and about'': the kids play; grown-ups plant gardens and spruce up their houses. In the same inviting vein, the story continues into summer, fallwith a harvest of fruits, nuts, berries as just ``desserts''and snowy winter, crowned by Christmas. A lovely book. Ages 3-7. (March)