Posted in Animal Fiction, Early Reader, Fiction, Preschool Reads

Join Porcupine’s Picnic!

porcupines-picnicPorcupine’s Picnic: Who Eats What?, by Betsy R. Rosenthal/Illustrated by Giusi Capizzi, (Feb. 2017, Millbrook Press), $19.99, ISBN: 9781467795197

Recommended for ages 4-6

Porcupine is going on a picnic! He packs a basket full of clover and settles into a perfect spot. Nearby animals ask to join him, and bring their own food: koala loves his eucalyptus, squireel enjoys his acorns, and giraffe nibbles on his leaves. When Tiger shows up, though, the picnic comes to a very quick end!

This is a cute introduction to different animals and what they eat. An explanation at the end of the book introduces readers to herbivores, carnivores, and omnivores, and points out which animals from the story belong to which group. The digital art is very cute, and the reptitive pattern of the story –¬†animal asks to join, Porcupine offers clover, animal declines and eats his or her own food – will appeal to younger readers, who can predict what will happen next. The story does tend to go on a bit long, at 40 pages, and could have used a few less animals; I worry about younger readers’ interest as the story proceeds. This would be a good flannel story candidate: create animals and foods, and invite storytime audiences to match the animal with the food on the flannel board, or even make up a worksheet and/or memory game to hand out after the story. An additional purchase for animal collections.