Say Hello Like This!
Say Hello Like This
Mary Murphy
ISBN 9780763669515
Candlewick, 2014.
4 stars
Keywords: animal-sounds animals concept-books mary-murphy say-hello-like

Say Hello Like This!
by Mary Murphy

As with her fabulous I Kissed the Baby!, Mary Murphy returns with a book that invites interactive play with preschoolers as she introduces animal sounds and behaviors.

"A dog hello is licky and loud..." Murphy begins. Thick black outlines depict two pups' exploratory postures and wide-eyed looks of anticipation. With a flip of a flap, a joyous canine cacophony erupts: "like this! bow-wow-wow-wow!" A red ball is momentarily forgotten as the smaller dog leaps up and licks the newfound playmate, sure to inspire similar toddler snuggling. Next, it's all feline formality for two cats, "prissy and proud," extending paws in greeting. Murphy tucks in details that toddlers love to discover: a pair of mice hide behind a ball of yarn as the cats paw-shake, and a chick hatches from an egg as two chickens greet each other ("flappy and clucky"). Several pairs of animals on the title page go unmentioned in the narrative, but toddlers will surely find them.

Murphy varies the moods, with frogs that jump for joy from their lily launchpads ("croakety croak"), and beetles whose hello is "tiny and tappy" as they touch antennae. A delicious word sums up the sound of all the animals gathered on the penultimate spread ("hullabaloo!"), which rhymes with the "one hello missing--let's hear it from you...." Spatters of paint simulate fireworks as all the animals await the last word from youngest book lovers: "Hello! like this!" Soon to become a family favorite.

This review first appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers.
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