Friday, February 22, 2013

Hey, Duck! by Carin Bramsen

I saw a few mentions of this that looked very cute, but I was disappointed when I picked up the actual book.

A fuzzy duckling insists on being friends with a grumpy cat. After trying in vain to explain that not only is she not a duck, she does not want to be friends, the cat finally escapes the importunate duckling, only to realize she really would like to be friends - maybe she'd even like to be a duck!

The pictures are cute enough, sort of an airbrushed digital effect. They're not my particular favorite, but I can see lots of kids and parents finding them cute. However, the text was rather bland. It consisted of awkward rhymed dialogue, always the mark of, in my opinion, an inexperienced writer. It takes a really, really good writer to do a rhymed picture book well; it should not be the default for new authors. For example, "Hey duck! Why is your tail so long?/Oh, please don't call me duck. It's wrong." It just doesn't work for me. I can't picture reading this aloud in storytime and if a picture book doesn't work in storytime for me, it's probably not going on our shelves.

Verdict: This would have been very cute if it had just been simple dialogue, but I'm really picky about rhyming picture books and this one doesn't make the grade for me. If you are less picky, you might want to add it as the pictures are quite cute.

ISBN: 9780375869907; Published 2013 by Random House; Review copy provided by the publisher; Added to prize books

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