Author and illustrator are well paired in this amusing, well-written tale: It offers a successful opportunity for students reading at a grade 1 level. This book comes from the "Green Light Reader" series. The plot centers on good friends Herbert Hippo and Tess Tiger and their picnic excursion. As it happens, Herbert has packed a remarkably good lunch for them to share when they arrive at the pond. Tess tells Herbert right away that she is providing four "very important things": an umbrella, a fan, a sack of little stones, and a whistle. In this comical story, all of her objects are needed just as much as Herbert's large lunch. Pages are filled with three to four lines of text created from short, easy-to-read sentences. The story allows readers to think in a chronological sequence and it is easy to recall events. Two activities are added at the end of the text. One tells youngsters how to make and share a book and the other explains how to make a nutritional snack. Both are simply written and contain photo clues. Whimsical illustrations are rendered in colored pencil and colored ink. Add this book and others from the series to classrooms with young and emerging readers. 2006 (orig. 2003), First Green Light Readers/Harcourt, Ages 5 to 7.
Nancy Garhan Attebury
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2-In the first title, a versatile birthday gift plays games, performs tricks, bakes, and cleans. But with each activity, the child narrator indicates that this "is not the best thing my robot can do." That refrain will have readers turning the pages of simple text just to discover the robot's most valued trait-friendship. A picnic story that is perfect fare for first-grade readers, Pond is about two friends whose outing is delayed when one doesn't feel well. Fortunately, Tess Tiger's umbrella and fan help Herbert Hippo cool off. She volunteers to go back for the picnic basket that he has forgotten. Returning with lunch in hand, she has a momentary fright when Herbert appears to be missing. But he's merely taking a dip and emerges from the water with an endearing big-toothed grin. Both titles have sufficient white space, illustrations that are pleasingly playful, and a craft activity. Nice additions for the easy-reader shelves.-Gloria Koster, West School, New Canaan, CT Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher
Praise for Harcourt's Green Light Readers:
"A must-have for any family with a beginning reader."--Boston Sunday Herald
"You can't go wrong with adding several copies of these terrific books to your beginning-to-read collection."--School Library Journal
"A winner for the beginner."--Booklist