Triceratops Stomp

Pajama Pr. Jul. 2019. 32p. Tr $17.95. ISBN 9781772780796.
Toddler-PreS–After hatching, triceratops babies are busy blinking their eyes (“blink-blink-blink”) and finding something to eat (“chomp-chomp”). Watch out, babies! There’s trouble in the forest. Here comes a T-Rex. Mama triceratops moves swiftly, pointing her horns, and frightens the T-Rex away. Patkau’s earth tone illustrations, while soothing, makes the babies difficult to spot and to differentiate among them. Layered digital illustrations, devoid of shadowing, appear flat. As a result, the illustrations lack the sense of motion needed to communicate DANGER! in the dinosaur world. The overly simplified text misses opportunities for the hefty dino vocabulary youngsters are hungry for. Every spread contains a single line of text describing the action, followed by an excess of generic onomatopoeia: “Triceratops babies hatch from the eggs./Chirp-chirp! Cheep-cheep! Peep-peep-peep!” More distinctive sound words, and topical lingo describing the triceratops anatomy (e.g., “frill”) and habits (e.g., “shrubs” instead of “something to eat”) would be enough to overcome the lackluster illustrations. A final appended illustration shows the featured dinosaurs with their respective sizes.
VERDICT A serviceable addition for the most devoted toddler dino fan.

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