Today’s Guest Reviewer, Sean Burgess, is a professional drummer and music teacher originally from Massachusetts. He lives in Hollywood with Terresa, his wife of 8 years, their 17 month old daughter Teagan and two crazy dogs named Nigel and Sable. So, Yo! Check out what he has to say about some pretty popular new books.
My family became instant fans of the hit children’s television show “Yo Gabba Gabba!” We are totally taken with the infectious, indie-new wave-electro songs with themes from brushing teeth to weather. The unique characters and personalities featured in each episode really catch your eye.
With all of the merchandising launched from the show, the coolest has to be the Welcome to Gabba Land hardcover book by Irene Kilpatrick. Fans of the show will immediately recognize that this book is shaped like DJ Lance’s boom box. The book is more like a play set, folded open to reveal the setting of the show. It also comes with characters that are paper dolls. We have fun every time we open the book to recreate the opening of show. DJ Lance opens the boom box to reveal the characters that soon come to life and romp around their respective “Lands”. This book is geared towards baby to preschool ages. My 17 month-old daughter Teagan has a habit of ripping papers so we use the actual stuffed toys rather than sacrifice the paper dolls. If you’re looking for a book to read, this may not be it. The only words are the descriptions and the names of each character. However, it is fun to find out what each creature really is. Welcome to Gabba Land is visually striking and closely reminiscent of the show. I would say we play with it more than read it.
The Yo Gabba Gabba! book that is a good read is Party in My Tummy by Jessica Echeverria. This board book is geared towards ages 4-8. The look and story content sounds just like the song from the show. “Party in My Tummy” happened to be the first song on the first Yo Gabba Gabba! episode we watched. It is super catchy and is sung at every one of our family feasts! The book is totally interactive allowing your young ones to open all the flaps to see what each character is going to eat. The Gabba bunch promotes healthy eating habits as well as reinforcing other positive life lessons. Although the age range is older than my daughter, being familiar with the show and song keeps her focused on all the words as we read. Even if you have not seen the show, the kooky characters, fantastic graphics and fun rhyming words will keep any and all reading this book over and over. “Now there’s a party in my tummy! So yummy, so yummy…”