cover image Tales of Wisdom and Wonder

Tales of Wisdom and Wonder

. Barefoot Books, $15.99 (0pp) ISBN 978-1-84148-401-3

Like fellow performer Justin Roberts (see Yellow Bus, above), McDermott knows of what he sings: he, too, was a Montessori teacher before becoming a recording artist. This follow-up to his award-winning I Am Baby again goes right to the heart of topics and tunes that grab kids' attention. Spanish guitar, country and western are among the influences found in McDermott's 10 original, clever compositions. Excellent supporting vocals and skillful guitar playing give his friendly sounding vocals an extra boost. ""Let's Go to the Beach"" is a bouncy Beach Boys-inspired ditty about the great times to be had in sun, sand and surf. The cheerful harmonies on ""Clap Your Hands"" will surely make listeners eager to join in and make music any way they can. In ""My Cat Can Fly,"" a kid is boggled by his pet's amazing abilities: ""My cat can fly,/ My cat can fly/ I feed her regular cat chow,/ But my cat can fly."" And the breezy ukulele-tinged ""Come to Hawaii"" extols the virtues of a backyard paradise replete with canned pineapple, cardboard palm trees and a wading pool. McDermott succeeds in providing an inventive musical outing for the whole family. Ages 2-up. (Mar.)