Chicka, Chicka, 1, 2, 3!
From School Library Journal PreSchool-Grade 2-A counting-book companion to Martin and Ehlert's Chicka, Chicka, Boom, Boom (S & S, 1989). The cut-paper art is almost identical to the earlier work, right down to the use of vibrant splashes of color. The layout will also be familiar to that title's many fans. At the center of the story this time, however, is an apple tree. Numerals race to the top with 1, 2, and 3 leading the way. Next come 4, 5, and 6 climbing right behind, but "Chicka Chicka 1, 2, 3. Will there be a place for me?" asks 0. Page after page, the numbers climb ("Hot pink 12, lucky 13, picking apples, red and green") and they all forget 0 down in the lower right-hand corner. They keep going "until at last there's 99, and all the numbers are feeling fine." Except for 0, that is, who begins to cry once again, "Chicka Chicka 1, 2, 3. Will there be a place for me?" And, at precisely that moment, a swarm of bumblebees arrives shouting, "GET OUT OF OUR TREE.." Alas, the counting begins anew, this time backward. And 0, no bad apple, finally discovers his life's calling and rightful place: at the very top of the tree next to 10, who stayed there all along, becoming. 100. This story is a perfect selection for 100th day or Zero the Hero celebrations. A deliciously sweet selection, and a nifty counting book to boot.
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