Michelle Landsberg and Leonard S. Marcus
April 08, 1994 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The latest in kid’s books

The lovely little book, Mud Makes Me Dance in the Spring, describes a young child’s springtime delights: puddle jumping, gardening, riding high in a swing. The first-person text is mushy in spots, but the artwork is fresh and in focus. B+

On Harvey Potter’s Balloon Farm, the cash crop is neither cabbage nor corn, but row after row of candy-bright balloons. Both author and illustrator merrily make hay of this wild premise. A-

What’s the very best thing to help a baby prince grow up? In the captivating picture book, Bub: Or the Very Best Thing, a king and queen ask everyone in the castle for advice, until they learn the prince has his own idea. A

The writer masterfully weaves a quirky fantasy about a family of life-size dolls in The Mennyms that leads an all-but- ordinary human existence, complete with hopes, fears, and a rich tangle of family relationships. A+

Young pioneer siblings worry as their stepmother, Sarah, endures her first prairie drought in Skylark. The kids’ roles as passive witnesses to an adult love story make this slightly less gripping than MacLachlan’s magnificent Sarah, Plain and Tall. B+

In the endearing board book Baby Giggles, 3-D legs stretch when baby walks and a receiver unfolds when baby talks on the phone. But buyer beware: Toddlers often show their love for pop-up books by ripping them to shreds. B

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