Reviews for 999 Frogs Wake Up


Booklist Reviews 2013 March #1
It's pretty darn difficult to find a more charming book than 999 Tadpoles (2011). Kimura kindly updates us on the oversize family's status, beginning with the little frogs poking their heads out of the dirt to awaken on a lovely morning. Mother Frog's head count, though, only reaches 998. Who is missing? Ah, it's their big brother, who is not only literally big but also leads the charge to rouse other slumbering animals from beneath rocks and leaves so that they too might enjoy the blossoming spring. A turtle, a lizard, some ladybugs--all are thankful for the wake-up call. And then there's the hole. Better wake up whoever is in there too, eh? Bad idea: a snake, rather like the one in 999 Tadpoles, awaits to give the family more grief. Murakami's big-eyed, kelly-green amphibians, set against large white backdrops, are just as cute now as they were as newborns, and their heedless groupthink as they race around being gee-whiz about everything remains downright ­adorable. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2013 Fall
Time to check in with the tadpoles-turned-frogs that we left in a pond in 999 Tadpoles. It's the following spring and the baby frogs are popping up out of the mud while Mother Frog tries to take inventory. Neon green endpapers springboard us into clean white pages that provide an inviting stage for waves of energetic lumpy froglets cunningly arranged and rearranged.

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Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2013 #3
Time to check in with the 999 tadpoles-turned-frogs that we left in a pond in Kimura and Murakami's 999 Tadpoles (rev. 7/11). They are doing fine, all 999 of them! It is the following spring and the baby frogs are popping up out of the mud while Mother Frog tries to take inventory. It is hard to keep track of them because they are busy waking everybody up -- big brother, old turtle, lizard, ladybugs, and, whoops, their old nemesis, the big snake. This time Mother Frog and the old turtle come to the rescue, leaving all 999 siblings safe and sound. Neon green endpapers springboard us onto the generous clean white pages that provide an inviting stage for waves of energetic lumpy froglets cunningly arranged and rearranged. Murakami celebrates the pleasures of the blob shape with blob trees, blob insects, blob cherry blossoms, and blob mud. Jaunty and joyful, this story lends itself to spring storytimes, individual counting contests, and artistic experimentation. How many variations of a frog face are possible in this, the largest family in picture-book land? sarah ellis

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Kirkus Reviews 2013 February #1
The froglets who once were 999 Tadpoles (2011) wake from hibernation for an eventful spring. First, big brother oversleeps. Then, the band of brothers and sisters set out to wake others to enjoy the season and the cherry blossoms. They rouse turtle, then lizard and then a mass of ladybugs. But, oh-oh, the next creature is a big red snake. This sequel is just as child friendly as its predecessor--simple and satisfying. Artful page turns add suspense even before the scary snake wakes up. The story moves along briskly, carried in dialogue as well as narrative. Mother Frog saves the day, and the turtle, grateful at being awoken in time for spring, removes the threat. Murakami's yellow-eyed frogs are surprisingly expressive. Gray-spotted shapes of green against a clean white background, they bounce across the pages, sometimes standing around in a group and sometimes scurrying off. When big brother recognizes the snake, his little pink mouth widens into a terrified grimace. Brown Mother Frog is different in color and size. Big brother is larger, too. The other 998 are largely indistinguishable. Murakami's landscape is only suggested; the imagination supplies the details. Like its predecessor, this Japanese import is an excellent storytime choice. (Picture book. 3-7) Copyright Kirkus 2013 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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Publishers Weekly Reviews 2013 January #3

The 999 tadpoles from Kimura's first book are frogs now, but their mother takes the responsibility of keeping track of them just as seriously as before: "No matter how many times she counted, she could still only find 998 froglets. ‘That's strange,' she said." Murakami's frogs are simple, primitive, papercut-style forms with outsize heads, gold eyes, and pink dots for mouths. It's the artful way they are scattered across the white pages that gives the spreads their graphic impact. Once the missing 999th frog has been awakened, he returns the favor by waking a turtle and other animal neighbors, who delight in spring's arrival. When--reprising the joke of 999 Tadpoles--he pulls what turns out to be a still-snoozing snake out of its hole, Mother Frog saves the day. Free of irony and full of innocent, even clichd, wonder at the beauties of spring ("I always oversleep and miss seeing the flowers, but this year I am awake on time. Thank you!" says the turtle), this book is a gift to the youngest readers, who should thoroughly enjoy it. Ages 4-8. (Mar.)

[Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC

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School Library Journal Reviews 2013 February

PreS-K--Wake up, sleepyheads! It's spring! Time to get up and enjoy the blossoming trees and growing flowers! That's what Mother Frog and 998 froglets say to their big brother as he continues to snooze and snore. Big brother finally does awake…but who is that still snoring? It's a turtle, who is grateful that the froglets woke him up in time to see the nearby cherry tree in bloom. Led by their big brother, the froglets proceed to wake up other slumbering creatures, including a lizard and a cluster of ladybugs. But who is that mysterious creature sleeping in the hole? After much tugging and "heave-ho"-ing, the frogs are shocked to discover a large snake eyeing them, looking for his next meal. Luckily, Mother Frog is able to soothe the snake back to sleep and the turtle takes him away, far into the woods. But who is that who went back to sleep along with the snake? It's big brother, all tuckered out from the morning's activities. Murakami's illustrations are bold, bright, and simple; the expression conveyed in something as small as the froglets' pupils tells volumes about the action. The use of white space keeps the focus right where it should be: on the darling froglets and the creatures they encounter. The text is brief enough to keep young audiences interested, particularly with fun expressions such as "zzz," and "POP!" In every way, this follow-up to 999 Tadpoles (NorthSouth, 2011) is a delight, and it is certain to be popular in frog- and springtime-themed storytimes.--Laura Lutz, Pratt Institute, New York City

[Page 77]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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