Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Small Readers: Digger and Daisy Go on a Picnic; Digger and Daisy Go to the Zoo by Judy Young, illustrated by Dana Sullivan

I'm looking at two books from the I Am a Reader! series published by Sleeping Bear press today. They're recommended for kindergarten to first grade and are about equal to an I Can Read level 1.

In Digger and Daisy Go on a Picnic, the quirky brother and sister duo start out enjoying the park be exhibiting their talents. Daisy is a good observer and Digger has a great sense of smell. This works out well when Digger's nose gets him into trouble and Daisy's sharp eyes get him out of it again! But when Digger's nose gets stuffed up with dirt, he's miserable that he can't smell anymore. What will clean out Digger's nose - and will he still smell good? (yes, there's a pun in there).

In Digger and Daisy Go to the Zoo, another wacky adventure is in store for the siblings. Digger tries to emulate the different animals by standing on one leg, climbing a tree, and eating leaves, but Daisy tells him they can't do those things and shows him what they CAN do. Finally, they discover something they can both enjoy, even if it's a little startling - cold water on a hot day and swimming in the pond.

The illustrations are cute and cartoonish, with lots of humorously exaggerated facial expressions and funny animal antics. They're laid out as spot illustrations set around the text, which is in a large, easy to read font.

I thought these were funny, but the plots were rather confusing. Why, exactly, can't these anthropomorphous dogs stand on one leg or climb a tree in the story about the zoo? It's pretty unusual to go jump in a pond at the zoo too - the silliness was a little too over the top for me. The first story felt like it was leading up to something with the contrasting Daisy sees things, Digger smells things but it just kind of petered out.

Verdict: These are very affordable and although they didn't click for me - I like at least a little logic in my nonsense books - kids are likely to think they are a hoot and enjoy them. Recommended.

Digger and Daisy Go on a Picnic
ISBN: 9781585368433

Digger and Daisy go to the zoo
ISBN: 9781585368419

Published 2013-2014 by Sleeping Bear Press; Borrowed from another library in my consortium; Added to the easy reader backlist

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