FICTION

The Giant Jumperee

illus. by Helen Oxenbury. 32p. Dial. Apr. 2017. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780735227972.
COPY ISBN
RedReviewStarToddler-PreS—When Rabbit hears a booming voice coming from his burrow, from someone who claims to be the Giant Jumperee, he's terrified. Cat, Bear, and Elephant each attempt to investigate but are sent running by the unseen occupant. Luckily, Mama Frog puts things right and reveals that the Giant Jumperee isn't nearly as terrifying as he sounds. Though the ending will be predictable to adults, it will elicit giggles of delight from the youngest readers and listeners. With just a few sentences per page, a repetitive narrative, and large illustrations that fill each spread, this straightforward tale will make for a lively and effective group read-aloud. Oxenbury is in fine form here. Sweet but never cloying, her soft watercolor images make excellent use of texture and shading, and her animals are utterly expressive: timid Rabbit hunches over in fear, determined Cat stalks toward the burrow with a frown, dazed Bear gazes up in shock, rattled Elephant wraps his trunk around a tree branch, and stern Mama Frog stands with arms akimbo as she summons the Giant Jumperee. Donaldson's spare text is perfect for read-alouds, and the title character's dialogue is full of catchy rhymes.
VERDICT Little ones will clamor for this one again and again. A lovely option for storytime or one-on-one sharing, especially for collections seeking materials for the younger set.

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