cover image Duck Dunks

Duck Dunks

Lynne Berry, , illus. by Hiroe Nakata. . Holt, $16.95 (24pp) ISBN 978-0-8050-8128-2

Berry and Nakata's counting book in verse blends easy, punchy rhymes and light-as-air watercolor-and-ink illustrations to cheerful effect. The five round-bellied ducklings from Duck Skates now head for a day at the beach with kite, float, towels and a cake in tow. Pictures vary in size and shape, immediately drawing readers into the whirlwind of activity on shore and in the surf. The taut text follows suit: “Snippety snap! Quick claws pinch./ Two ducks yelp. Three ducks flinch.” A full-bleed page of aqua, punctuated with the bobbing and spinning ducks, suggests the sense of endless sea; further on, four horizontal scenes across one spread replicate the slowly shifting colors of sunset on the beach. Repeated rhymes add a comforting balance to the spirited doings. A breezy delight. Ages 3–5. (June)