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Monday, January 28, 2013

It''s A Tiger, written by David LaRochelle and illustrated by Jeremy Tankard. Chrnicle Books, Raincoast. 2012. $19.99 ages 3 and up

"Ah, sunshine!
Doesn't that feel good?
Hundreds of them!
If we're very quiet (shhh!)
we can tiptoe past.
Blue snakes.
Green snakes."

If Indiana Jones were with us, he would not be tiptoeing past any kind of snakes...not blue or green ones. He would be running the other way.

By the time our young narrator comes upon the snakes, he has already had a jungle meeting with some monkeys....and a TIGER! He encourages readers to RUN! Picking a cave to hide in, he encounters the dark shadows of a host of bats, and another shadow that looks like a TIGER! Luckily there's a ladder leading out of the cave and that is where he discovers this  jumbled mass of snakes, of all colors. Look, there's even one that is fuzzy and striped. Can it be? Yes, it is....a TIGER!

The tiger doesn't seem so fierce, or intent on harm. Is he giving chase, or is the boy just imagining it? With the tiger in apparent pursuit, he swings out on a rope and across the canyon....wait! What's that orange-and-black pillow?

Still fearing the tiger, he is off to sea and finally safe. Nope, no such luck! When the tiger pops up and out of a treasure chest with a fearsome roar, the boy....wait, is that a yawn rather than a roar? How about a story to help him go to sleep?

It starts in a jungle with some monkeys. And is that a crocodile's tail hanging from a nearby tree? You bet it is! RUN!

They will be yelling 'circle story' before you utter the final word of text. Little ones love those stories that come back to where they started, and they are sure to feel the same about this lively tiger tale.

Jeremy Tankard's energetic and spirited spreads add the perfect touch of excitement that will have the audience falling right into the fun.  He uses ink and digital media to create the brilliant artwork, filled with bold colors and constant action. What a wonderful pairing this is...making for a picture book that is as close to perfect as you might get.

It's funny, with surprises. It demands that listeners take part in the reading because of that fun, and the opportunity to yell over and over again. It's a blast and you won't get away with just reading it one time. Can there be anything better for a reader to hear than....'read it again! PLEASE!'?

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for such kind words about IT'S A TIGER!, Sal! In case any of your teacher and librarian readers are interested, there are free extension activities and a teaching guide at my website, You made my day with your review!