“Compliments and the turn of a page put a smile on each animal's face, making this a loving and interactive read for toddlers.”
Playful colors and darling animals adorn this changing-faces board book with interactive sliding tabs that automatically change the featured animal’s face with just the turn of a page. A monkey admires his many animal friends—an elephant, lion, wildebeest, and zebra—by complimenting something Monkey loves about their appearance. Each compliment is followed by a page turn, revealing a happy animal expression resulting from the compliment, along with Monkey mimicking the admired attribute—like Monkey using hands to create pretend horns like Wildebeest’s—and wishing it were his own. The story ends with the animals sharing how much they love Monkey and the sweet message of acceptance and love in the last sentence, “We love you just the way you are!” The simplicity of the interactive aspect of turning a page to reveal a new facial expression makes this a read a toddler an enjoy on his or her own. While the book focuses on appearances and monkey’s wish to look like other animals, the humble appreciation of the animals’ response to Monkey’s admiration presents a powerful lesson on the impact of kind words and seeing value in one’s own unique qualities.
With the turn of each page, young readers share the love Monkey feels for his friends! “I love you!” is the refrain on each spread of this joyful story. Readers will delight in seeing new faces appear and then change when the page is turned, thanks to the magical Venetian blind element built into the book. This sweet novelty board book is great fun to read aloud, and the perfect addition to our Changing Faces series.
When you turn each page, you get to see how monkey’s kind words affect how each animal feels—they all smile! What kind things could you say to your family members or friends? How does it make you feel when people compliment you?
Monkey sees attributes in the other animals that he wishes he had, too (like Zebra’s stripes!). While it’s great to see the good in others, it’s also important to see the good in yourself and be happy with who you are. What qualities do you have that you’re proud of?
These Changing Faces books are very novel and fun. The text of this one is pretty simple and basic, though the message is still sweet.
Carles Ballesteros is a Spanish-born illustrator living and working in Santiago, Chile. He is a member of the Professional Association of Illustrators of Catalonia (APIC). Ballesteros uses a mixture of traditional drawing skills and digital techniques to create his work. He is also the illustrator of Building Machines and other titles in the Changing Faces series, including I Love You, Elephant!, Is That Your Dad?, Don’t Wake the Tiger!, and Meet Happy Bear.