A Small Surprise

Overview

A triumphant and endearing tale to tickle the smallest listeners.

A very small bunny wants to join the circus and is not put off by a sign reading “Small Animals Need Not Apply.” Though he is too small to wipe his nose or tie his shoes or walk far without a rest, he is not too small to make a BIG impression on the lion, the orangutan, and the other big animals of this circus troupe. This buoyant little tale is at turns funny, endearing, ...

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Overview

A triumphant and endearing tale to tickle the smallest listeners.

A very small bunny wants to join the circus and is not put off by a sign reading “Small Animals Need Not Apply.” Though he is too small to wipe his nose or tie his shoes or walk far without a rest, he is not too small to make a BIG impression on the lion, the orangutan, and the other big animals of this circus troupe. This buoyant little tale is at turns funny, endearing, clever—and just right for the smallest child in any family. The brief text and expressive illustrations are great fun to share with a preschooler.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
"Smallness is strength" is the motto on the cover, written on a banner surrounding our rabbit hero. On the front end pages he approaches a tent, passing a "Jobs available" sign that adds, "Small animals need not apply." "I am small," he admits, as he demonstrates to a series of confused animals. Like many readers, he is too small to do many things, like wiping his nose, tying his shoes, even eating without making a mess. After he makes these statements, however, our jaunty rabbit insists that he is "just the right size" to disappear and reappear repeatedly to the amazement of the other animals. "…and that's what makes MAGIC!" This ability gets him the job. The mixed group of animals: giraffe, rhino, large snake, and gorilla are drawn for comic effect and painted in naturalistic hues with no background details. The few words of text are in large type, while "disappear" is created with elaborate characters suggesting circus posters. On the back end page, like the front in blue monochrome, the rabbit has removed the sign and painted himself into the advertising poster. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal

PreS-K

A little white bunny refuses to be thwarted by a circus advertisement that states "small animals need not apply." In simple text, the young rabbit shows the other creatures that it may be too small to do certain things like tying shoelaces, but that it can do something pretty special nonetheless. Much like these characters, preschoolers will anticipate the bunny's next move. The illustrations are rendered in soft hues that are soothing yet colorful. The animals, which include a gorilla and giraffe, have wonderfully expressive eyes and gestures. There are a few words in a large font on each page, making it easy for young children to follow along. A veritable game of peek-a-boo at the end-which includes disappearing into and reappearing from a lion's mouth-will enchant and encourage those who usually find themselves too small to do many things and help them recognize their talents.-Linda M. Kenton, Pickleweed Public Library, San Rafael, CA

Kirkus Reviews
Small children may not be able to walk far, wipe their noses or tie their own shoes, but they have their own special talents. One little bunny illustrates this clearly when he responds to an ad for a position in the circus despite the injunction that "small animals need not apply." The larger animals don't know what to make of him at first and seem rather disgruntled with the extra work he requires. But his special talent for disappearing and reappearing (thanks to his size) keeps them on their toes and will be sure to have readers in stitches. Even without the power of speech, it is perfectly clear what the animals are thinking and how they are feeling, their broad expressions speaking volumes. Simple details and single-toned backgrounds keep the focus on the characters. Yates's debut is one of those books that grows on readers with repetition. Small children who feel they aren't big enough to do anything will appreciate the message, while their adults might be inspired to look for the hidden talents. (Picture book. 3-6)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375856983
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 5/12/2009
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 1,119,939
  • Age range: 3 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 10.50 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Louise Yates began drawing pictures to go with stories she wrote at a very young age. A Small Surprise is the first published book from this talented young author-artist who obviously understands the art of communicating with the youngest child through words and pictures. She lives in London.

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