cover image Par-Tay! Dance of the Veggies and Their Friends

Par-Tay! Dance of the Veggies and Their Friends

Eloise Greenfield, illus. by Don Tate. Alazar, $17.95 ISBN 978-0-9977720-2-9

When the humans go out for the evening, the vegetables in the fridge—along with the sweet potatoes in the bin—go wild. “Par-tay!” shouts the cabbage—which becomes the book’s refrain—and with the eggplant, basil, tomato, and Swiss chard on instruments, everybody else takes a turn on the floor. The baby limas, who can “barely stand at all,” try their best to do the wobble dance; the corn and arugula waltz; and the sweet potatoes, dressed in pink tutus, do pirouettes. Greenfield writes vivid verses, with breezy references to different dance styles and flashes of real comedy (“Somebody save me!” says the ecstatic asparagus after “doing the pop”). And while the repetition of “Par-tay!” adds crowd-pleasing fun and predictability, a new chant of “Go, ’Choke! Go, ’Choke! Go, ’Choke!” inserts some irresistible surprise. Except for the refined waltzing couple, all the vegetables share a happy-go-lucky, jazzy vibe. Tate’s big shapes, bold colors, and infectious beats will hold up to many readalouds. Ages 5–7. Author’s agent: Marie Brown, Marie Brown Assoc. Illustrator’s agent: Caryn Wiseman, Andrea Brown Literary Agency. (Apr.)