Hiccupotamus Author: Steve Smallman Illustrator: Ada Grey
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Format: Picture Books

Age Range: 3-7 years

Publication Date: March 2015

BISAC: JUV002330

Pages: 32

Book Format Detail: Jacketed Hardcover

Retail Price: $16.99

ISBN-13: 978-1-58925-171-7

ISBN-10: 1-58925-171-7

Dimensions: 10" x 11-1/4"

The jungle animals are having a musical celebration! Mouse squeaks, Bird tweets, and Centipede taps his feet. Then ore animals hear the music and want to join in, as Monkey, Warthog, and Crocodile bring their own music-making talents to the group. And what is that silly Hippo doing?

By a bubbling creek in the jungle, Mouse squeaks out a musical beat. Who else wants to join in?A little bird asks to tweet along, and a centipede begins thumping out a rhythm with his feet. One by one, other animals want to add their own hip sounds to the toe-tapping jingle. The warthog offers to bang "on his belly like a big bass drum." The grinning crocodile uses a bone to play his teeth like a xylophone. The jubilant song builds and repeats as the gathering grows, encouraging readers to join in on the chorus: "Tip-tap-a-tippy-tappy, / Tweet-tweet-tweet. / Squeak, squeak, bubble, bubble, / squeak, squeak, SQUEAK!" With vibrant close-ups of the animals' faces, the colorful pages burst with the excitement of jamming with friends. Even with simple dots or lines for eyes, every animal exudes its own personality, from the sniffing mouse to the monkey with rubbery arms. Smallman, wielding the rhythmic words like a conductor's baton, stops the cumulative syncopation cold when the previously unseen Hippopotamus takes credit for their catchy song. The musicians are incredulous, but readers who note the title of the story and the "bubble, bubble" in the refrain may have a clue. Though there's not much to the story, the energetic wordplay coupled with cheery images makes this an easy crowd-pleaser. (Picture book. 3-7). 32pg. KIRKUS MEDIA LLC, c2015.

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A squeaking mouse sitting near a bubbling creek inspires an impromptu jungle band. A bird overhears the mouse and sings along, soon joined by a toe-tapping centipede. A monkey, a warthog, and eventually a crocodile playing his teeth like a xylophone participate in the jam session. Joyfully exhausted, the animals at last rest in a heap. To the mouse they cry, "We all helped it's true. But the person we should thank is...." The rhythmic, rhyming text is suddenly disrupted when the page turn reveals a large hippo shouting, "Me!" This unexpected participant divulges that his hiccups created the bubbling creek. The fun, colorful illustrations perfectly depict this musical romp in the jungle, which is sure to elicit some giggles. VERDICT This bubbly selection will be a hit with the storytime crowd. Laura Hunter, Mount Laurel Library, NJ. 32p. K-Gr. 2. SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL, c2015.