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Sam McBratney, , illus. by Anita Jeram. . Candlewick, $7.99 (24pp) ISBN 978-0-7636-3546-6

Nutbrown Hare and Little Nutbrown Hare, the cotton-tailed father-son stars of McBratney and Jeram’s Guess How Much I Love You , hop back onto the scene for two board books that introduce preschool concepts via sweet-natured stories. The Hares’ easygoing exchanges, familiar to fans of the original picture book, are set off to great effect as the son poses such queries as “What’s your favorite red?” (in Colors Everywhere ) or “What does an egg turn into?” (in When I’m Big ). At every turn, Nutbrown Hare replies briefly, supplying clear bits of information (“I think maybe those berries” and “A bird,” respectively); his answers both satisfy his young charge as well as encourage further discussion. Jeram’s sunny ink-and-watercolor illustrations—sprightly spot art and spreads—offer subtle yet solid reinforcement of the text, playfully challenging youngest readers to explore a grassy riverbank or flower-filled meadow and come to their own conclusions. Weaving color identification and size/growth comparison into pleasant spring outings, the approach in these books feels like a fresh and logical expansion of the popular characters’ world. Ages 2-4. (Jan.)