a long while back, i wrote a review of the books by matthew van fleet. these books were so popular in our household for such a long time that we’d actually purchase anything new by this author as soon as it was published (unheard of for this librarian mama). now that the happy little dude is a bit older, we haven’t read these books as often recently (although at one point, we didn’t go on long vacations without one or two in our bags), so i was pleasantly surprised to get an e-mail from the publisher asking if i’d like to host a giveaway to celebrate the release of the newest member of the van fleet collection, due in stores August 27:
they sent me a free copy of the book to review, so here are my unbiased opinions in case you’re curious:
–the size of the book is smaller than the earlier books that i’m more familiar with, but the most recent trio (sniff!, lick!, munch!) are all this same size. they are apparently called “mini’s” and although they are still much larger than the average board book, this series would be much easier to tuck into a diaper bag (or suitcase, see above note) than any of the others. (also a bit cheaper list price!)
–there are fewer moving parts (only 4, including the cover and the interior page with the same alligator munching an apple), and I’m betting that the pelican mouth will be the first thing to get ripped, but the rest seem less grabbable than past books.
–the tabs in munch! are also easier for younger children to use themselves since they are almost the width of the entire page, located at the edge of the page and all pull out the same direction to activate the motion. the “beaver gnawing” mechanism was a bit confusing at first, but i finally realized it was supposed to make that ratchety feel because it was the beaver chewing through the log. after reading copies of sniff! and lick! i discovered that that same mechanism is used in both of those books for different visual reasons (i.e. a tiger blowing “raspberries”).
–there are also less textures in this book than in others (i was only able to find four textures and two of the two-page spreads have neither a texture or a moving part–disappointing).
–the writing is similar to the rest of the van fleet titles (although the line about “some mouths don’t know when to shut” seemed a bit catty to me, but perhaps that’s simply because i’ve been accused of being overly chatty myself in the past? shocking, i know) with clever rhymes and a steady cadence.
so here’s the fun part: the publisher has offered to send a set of hanna andersson kid’s pajamas and copies of the books munch!, sniff!, lick!, moo, cat and alphabet to the winner of a giveaway on my blog! (i really wish i could enter the giveaway myself, but i’m thinking that would be against the rules…) one of you lucky lot will get this fabulous prize package and all you have to do is
leave a comment, telling me your current favorite bedtime book (and the age(s) of the listener(s)) by 10 p.m. this friday night, august 23, 2013. giveaway now closed, congratulations, melanie! be sure that i have a way to contact you!
good luck to all of you!