Love On a Plate

Reycraft. Jun. 2021. 32p. Tr $17.95. ISBN 9781478873709.
Toddler-PreS–The ideas in Kheiriyeh’s The Shape of Home balanced the literal with the metaphoric in a way that was childlike and eye-opening; here, the approach is very visual and tangible from the outset. This lift-the-flap book covers a week of plates in a young fox’s life, lovingly composed by the mother. She uses simple snack food to create, on Monday, a robot of “rice, peas, carrots, seaweed, and pasta.” The robot is a boon companion the rest of the day, or is this the mother playing with her child in the imagination of the little fox? Every day has its surprises, but on Sunday, the tables are turned courtesy of Mother’s Day, when the small fox creates a butterfly of waffles, sprinkles, and more. The loose watercolor look of these cheerful displays, concealed under a plain white plate till children raise the flap, will have everyone ready to go through their own kitchens, while the use of the animals instead of humans gives this the universality and power of a familiar nursery tale.
VERDICT Whether for toddlers to point and name, or preschoolers ready to discuss their likes and dislikes on the food front, this ebullient work will be at home in any collection.

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