Book: Hap-pea All Year
Author: Keith Baker
Age Range: 3-6
Hap-pea All Year is the fourth book in Keith Baker's The Peas series (which started with LMNO Peas). These are basically concept books featuring cute little pea-characters doing their thing in a world of large letters and numbers. Hap-pea All Year introduces preschoolers to the twelve months of the year, and their associated seasons and holidays. Each page spread shows the month written out in giant letters, with the tiny peas cavorting in seasonally appropriate ways, and brief rhyming text that highlights something about that month. For example:
"Hap-pea February! Deliver valentines.
Count to twenty-eight -- or leap to twenty-nine."
This example may require explanation from a parent for younger listeners, though my six-year-old understood it just fine. My personal favorite text accompanies August:
"Hap-pea August! Bait a fishing hook.
Nap in cool shade, reread your favorite book."
But of course it's the illustrations that make Hap-pea All Year fun. In all cases, Baker uses colors and tone appropriate to the month in question (e.g. yellow for the sunny August). The letters are shown as lightly textured, with the subtle patterns containing extra hints about the month in question. The sky looms large in all of the page spreads, too, particularly July, with a star-filled sky. And the peas covert in endless, joyful ways, from sledding and skiing in January to camping in July to raking leaves and wearing Halloween costumes in October. One of the peas holds a little sign indicating the month number each month, and I'm sure there are other details that I missed on my first couple of reads through the book.
Fans of The Peas series, and libraries serving preschoolers everywhere, will definitely and to add Hap-pea All Year to their collections. It's a book that offers mild-age appropriate educational facts, keeping things fun all the while. This is a book that simply made my daughter and I happier from reading it. Recommended!
Publisher: Beach Lane Books (@SimonKids)
Publication Date: November 1, 2016
Source of Book: Review copy from the publisher
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