"Skip! Hop! Zip! Nip!" The sprightly characters from "Halloween Mice!" frolic across a wintry landscape to deliver valentines to all their woodland friends. Lively rhymed text filled with sounds that are fun to say aloud, and a simple mystery -- what happened to the littlest mouse? -- that is happily solved, make this a perfect book to share with a very young audience.
decorated cards to woodland pals. Roberts's simple, somewhat choppy text introduces beginning readers to basic words and rhyming sounds as the four mice, bundled up against the cold, make their rounds: "One to the rabbit, two for the squirrels, three for the chipmunks. Zip! Nip!" After tossing the remaining Valentines into the air ("Shower valentines! THROW! THROW! THROW!"), three seemingly punchy mice make a sobering discovery: the fourth has disappeared. Cushman's motion-filled, festive watercolors humorously document the rescue of the missing mouse, who has become buried in snow. The artist realizes a welcome balance of the real and the whimsical, giving preschoolers the chance to identify various animal species while enjoying such lighthearted images as a moose with a Valentine tucked into its antlers. A spirited if slight holiday caper. Ages 3-6.