cover image Happy Birthday to You!

Happy Birthday to You!

Nicola Slater. Nosy Crow, $16.99 (10p) ISBN 978-0-7636-9943-7

Gentle, bright-eyed cartoon animals play an orchestral rendition of “Happy Birthday” in this battery-operated musical outing. Readers make the music play by touching the shiny buttons integrated into the cheerful scenes. Bear first plays the flute: “She blows her flute—/ it toots and trills!/ Do you know what she’ll play?” A flute plays the opening line to the song. Next is Badger, who plays guitar in a meadow (a twangy guitar sounds the second “Happy Birthday to You”). Wolf passes by in a truck with a cello in back. “Will they be going far?” Cat on violin follows Bear and Badger to a restaurant, where a moose plays a pink piano and Otter—“today’s his special day”—arrives at the awaiting celebration. A final spread features a musical grand finale as well as a light-up candle on Otter's birthday cake. Ages 4–8. (Apr.)
Correction: A previous version of this review indicated that there was no musical element on the final spread.