________________ CM . . . . Volume XXIV Number 21 . . . . February 2, 2018


Who Can?

Charles Ghigna. Illustrated by Vlasta van Kampen.
Victoria, BC: Orca, March, 2018.
24 pp., board book, pdf & epub, $9.95 (bb.).
ISBN 978-1-4598-1369-4 (bb.), ISBN 978-1-4598-1370-0 (pdf), ISBN 978-1-4598-1371-7 (epub).

Preschool / Birth-age 3.

Review by Gail Hamilton.

*** /4

Reviewed from Advance Reading Copy.



Who can sing while sitting in a tree? Who can? TOUCAN
Who can fill his bill with tasty fish? Who can? PELICAN
Who does somersaults and eats bamboo? Who does? PANDAS
Who does fishy flips and has sharp teeth? Who does? BARRACUDAS

Rhythm, repetition and rhyme combine in this amusing and bouncy hide-and-reveal board book which features 10 different animals. The lively text poses a riddle while a partially (actually, mostly) hidden animal is shown in the illustration, inviting toddlers to guess what animal will be fully revealed on the next page. Not all of the animals are commonly known among toddlers – barracudas, centipedes and toucans, for example – nor are some of the words with multiple meanings. For instance, hamsters stir their wheels in their playgrounds, but the rooster stirs the farmer out of bed every morning. But with the book's being read aloud by a parent or caregiver, there is plenty of opportunity to talk about interesting new animals and to develop language. Rich, vibrant watercolour paintings enhance the text and provide readers with plenty of details to examine. Clever, whimsical and fun!


Gail Hamilton is a former teacher-librarian in Winnipeg, MB.

To comment on this title or this review, contact cm@umanitoba.ca.

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