CRASH! BOOM!: A Math Tale

illus. by Chris Chatterton. 32p. Candlewick. May 2018. Tr $15.99. ISBN 9780763678272.
Toddler-PreS—A clever blend of scanned images of wooden unit blocks and a perfectly adorable hand-drawn blue elephant set the stage of this counting and building book. Young readers will instantly be familiar with the elephant's actions; he carefully places four blocks vertically on top of each other until, "WOW! I did it! It's as tall as ME!" The pause of a page turn is enough to build suspense for the inevitable crash that follows. Poor elephant cries but continues to rebuild his tower. Background details such as sunflower yellow walls with trim and a shamrock green rug exude joyfulness. The final page turn reveals some basic math equations: one large rectangle unit block, standing next to two, then four, then eight blocks that all equal the same size when placed next to one another vertically.
VERDICT A simply presented look at block play and the mathematics behind it. Perfect for early learning collections in both public and school libraries.

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