Birthday Rules

illus. by Teresa Murfin. 32p. ebook available. Carolrhoda. Mar. 2015. lib. ed. $16.99. ISBN 9780761360711. LC 2014011651.
PreS-Gr 1—Who knew that birthdays could be so complicated? Young Percy Isaac Gifford, introduced in Thanksgiving Rules (Carolrhoda, 2009) is back and celebrating his day by providing some detailed instructions for other kids who might follow in his birthday shoes. Tips for a birthday bash include "Shake and shimmy. Hop and roll and skip. Twirl and tap and tango. Leap and bounce and flip!" Official birthday rules like "Rule #7: It ain't over till there's singing" can be found interwoven throughout the narrative. The text is fun and lyrical, but the rhythm is often forced and inconsistent. The full-bleed mixed-media illustrations are engaging and draw readers along through use of vibrant colors and eye-popping texture. The typeface adds a celebratory feel but fluctuates in size, color, and font so often that it can feel extremely busy when mixed with collage artwork.
VERDICT A nice choice for a birthday gift or a special read for birthdays in classrooms or daycares.

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