Book: Circle, Square, Moose
Author: Kelly Bingham
Illustrator: Paul O. Zelinsky
Age Range: 4-8
Circle, Square, Moose is a companion book to Z is for Moose, by Kelly Bingham and Paul O. Zelinsky. The premise for both books is that a narrator is trying to teach teach something (shapes, in Circle, Square, Moose), until said narrator is interrupted by a wayward Moose. Zebra attempts to tame Moose's bad behavior, but this only makes things get more out of hand, until the poor narrator just gives up.
Circle, Square, Moose is just as funny as Z is for Moose. The goofy, determined Moose and the worried, cap-wearing Zebra's escapades are sure to entertain kids. And there is useful information in the book about shapes, though one has to remain a bit focused to read it. My favorite bit, I think, is when the narrator is using a sandwich to illustrate "square", and then Moose steals the sandwich, and chomps it into a triangle. A memorable way to think about transitions between shapes.
This book is made to read aloud. Even though I was alone the first time I read through it, I still read it aloud. The narrator's protests are increasingly vehement, and call for dynamic vocalization on the part of the reader. It's a bit disjointed, sure, with interruptions to the narrative flow on every page, but it's pretty much the perfect combination of entertaining and informative.
Zelinsky's mixed media illustrations capture the playfulness of the story, and Moose's irrepressible spirit. The variety of fonts and colors makes the book fairly busy, a daytime read rather than a quiet bedtime book.
Circle, Square, Moose is more a book to read with slightly older kids than to read aloud to toddlers (who won't get the joke). But for pre-k listeners and up, Circle, Square, Moose is sure to be irresistible. I do think it's more of a one-on-one book than a group storytime book, though I would be interested to hear otherwise. In any case, Circle, Square, Moose is a surefire hit. Recommended!
Publisher: Greenwillow Books (@HarperChildrens)
Publication Date: September 23, 2014
Source of Book: Review copy from the publisher
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