Penguin and Pumpkin, (Bloomsbury, $14.99, Ages 0-5) by Salina Yoon, is reviewed by Ronna Mandel.
Look at this inviting cover. Don’t you just want to hug the little fella? And his signature scarf, this time in orange, is P R E C I OU S!
Moving the clocks back an hour, along with cooler evenings here in L.A. means fall has finally arrived, making it the perfect time to share an autumn-themed picture book.
Salina Yoon’s latest, Penguin and Pumpkin, featuring the popular character we all adore from her three previous picture books (Penguin and Pinecone, Penguin on Vacation, and Penguin in Love), introduces readers to Pumpkin, Penguin’s fledgling younger brother. Eager for a change of scenery, Penguin is ready to explore, but Pumpkin’s simply too young to go. “I’m not a baby!” exclaims the fledgling, but when Grandpa puts in his two cents, it’s clear little Pumpkin is not going anywhere. So …
“Penguin, Bootsy, and their friends headed to the farm.”
Help your kids look out for the sleepy penguin who can’t keep his eyes open during ocean travel. Too cute! Once on land, it’s pumpkins galore for the gang as everyone chooses a favorite to bring home. Penguin, however, can’t stop thinking about his little brother as he sees the wonderful time his friends are having picking out pumpkins. Back home, “The fall explorers were excited to share their treasures from the farm.” But Pumpkin is nowhere to be found. Turns out he was making his own fun, but still really yearned to see fall.
With one beautiful surprise gesture orchestrated by his older brother, Pumpkin gets to experience fall in all its colorful glory. The book has a glow about it that feels like Thanksgiving time. Yoon’s bold illustrations, with their thick black outlines, seem to shout out to youngsters who read her books, “Copy me!” And they do! Yoon gets the most amazing fan art which demonstrates the appeal of her Penguin.
This simple story with its message of love for a special time of year, and for a sibling, will warm hearts and make penguin lovers out of children everywhere.
Here are links to other Salina Yoon books we’ve reviewed.