Monday, April 30, 2018

April Showers! Duck, Duck, Porcupine! by Salina Yoon


With the sun high in a big blue sky, Big Duck takes charge. The picnic basket is prepared and the blanket for the picnickers to sit on is fetched. Big Duck declares that they are all set. But Little Duck is watching a cloud floating in front of the sun. With a metabook look out at the readers, he lets them know that he's aware of something Big Duck doesn't yet know.

PLOP It's beginning to rain!

Porcupine proclaims the picnic permanently spoiled! But Little Duck sees certain possibilities in showers. He walks right into a puddle with a slish-slosh and a splish-splash! Big Duck tries out the puddle with one toe and pronounces it has potential! All three take the plunge into the puddle's middle.


The cloud moves on, and so do the three friends, ready for their picnic spread. But Big Duck remembers there's something she forgot--if only she could remember what it is! Little Duck gives her a hint.

Quack, Quack-Quack-Quack QUACK QUACK!

Could it be the birthday CAKE that Big Duck has forgotten? Why, yes, yes, it could! And Porcupine has his party after all.

Encouraged by the picnic, Big Duck moves on to planning a camping trip for the three of them. She starts her list of supplies. When she gets to #98, a shovel "in case of a flash flood,", Porcupine begins to want to pull out of the expedition. Duck will have to hire a truck for all this stuff! But when the list gets up to #100, marshmallows, Little Duck decides to stick around for the S'MORES!

And more than s'mores are in store, in Salina Yoon's easy-reading Duck, Duck, Porcupine! (A Duck, Duck, Porcupine Book) Author Yoon offers simple text and and a certain sweet silliness to her stories of the three amigos, all different but all friends who share their fun with each other.

Yoon's award-winning artwork is familiar, with much in common with her hit Penguin books, Penguin and Pinecone and Penguin on Vacation, as well as her popular lift-the-flap Do Cows Meow? (A Lift-the-Flap Book). While it's true that, as the Bulletin for the Center for Children's Books says, "Yoon’s crisp, clean art has a coloring-book-like simplicity that will appeal to youngsters. . . , the interpersonal relationships between the characters are more subtle, inferred rather than stated outright. The two ducks are no cookie-cutter characters: Big Duck is a matter-of-fact, task-oriented big-sister type, while Little Duck has a visually wry take on her doings that add sensibility and humor to the mix, and Porcupine also functions as the amiable foil for this duckie duo. Good for read alouds for the youngest book lover, and easy for the emergent reader to tackle alone, this one is a great addition to the early grades bookshelf.

Other books in this series are That's My Book! And Other Stories (A Duck, Duck, Porcupine Book) and My Kite is Stuck! and Other Stories (A Duck, Duck, Porcupine Book).

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