cover image Ocean Parade

Ocean Parade

Patricia MacCarthy / Author Dial Books $11.95 (26p) ISBN 978-0

This is a counting book with extraordinary flair, from the first big fish to 100 little silver fish swarming around a treasure chest overflowing with gold coins. The silk batik paintings light up pages that spill glowing color to the edges; some pages have borders and on others the colors of the sea wash the entire surface. There are flat fish, thin fish, fat fish, and eels, sea horses and an octopus--the perfect choice for number 8. The book features a sea creature for each number up to 20, then on to 30 purple fish, 40 golden fish, 50 pink-and-green-spotted fish and so on by 10s to 100. Little purple fish share a sandy, rocky ocean bottom with sea horses, and dark and light fish share space, subtly integrating counting lessons with social ones. Fans of MacCarthy's 17 Kings and 42 Elephants will be delighted to see her latest work using the same distinctive technique. This one makes a fresh splash of its own. Ages 3 - 7. (Mar.)