Belgian author/illustrator Liesbet Slegers offers four titles to quell childhood fears. The paper-over-board books star a forthright fellow depicted in thick black line and pleasingly smudgy brushstrokes of rainbow colors. "I'm Kevin. I'm on my way. I have my suitcase and my grandma," he announces as he boards an airplane in Kevin Takes a Trip. When he gets scared, his grandmother comforts him. Kevin Goes to School; Kevin Goes to the Hospital; and Kevin Spends the Night address other universal anxieties.
Lunchbox in hand, Kevin is ready for his first day of preschool. At first Kevin is scared to leave his mom, but his separation anxiety is no match for the school day's agenda of puppet shows, block building, and arts and crafts projects. By day's end, Kevin has even made a new friend. Simple text, translated from the Belgian, is written in large block letters on primary-colored backgrounds. The illustrations rendered in cheery colors and depicting large-headed, rosy-cheeked children, add to the story's upbeat mood. Directions for making Kevin's paper hat are clear enough for preschoolers to follow with an adult's help. Overall, a reassuring story for toddlers who are making a transition to preschool. 2002, Kane/Miller,
— Norah Piehl
School Library Journal
PreS-A toddler tackles a new experience in each of these titles. The stories are told in simple sentences and toddler-friendly language. All of them begin in a similar fashion, as in Trip: "I'm Kevin. I'm on my way. I have my suitcase and my grandma." He recounts selected details of each situation and describes typical negative and positive emotions associated with each new experience. In School, he explains that: "Mom is talking to a lady. She's my new teacher./No Mom, wait! Don't go yet!" Later he meets Ali, "my new friend. We drink our milk together." The books have sturdy pages and are just the right size for little hands. The brightly colored gouache artwork has a childlike quality and depicts a preschooler's-eye view of the world (adults are always shown from the chest down). In addition, Kevin's emotions are clearly expressed, so that youngsters will easily relate to him. Not essential purchases, but useful, engaging books that parents and children will enjoy.-Melinda Piehler, North Tonawanda Public Library, NY Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Liesbet Slegers is a graphic designer, a children's book illustrator, and the author of "Guess What I'm Doing," "Guess Where I Am," "Guess Who I Am," "Katie Moves," "Kevin and Katie," "Kevin Goes to the Hospital," "Kevin Spends the Night," and "Kevin Takes a Trip."