Faster! Faster! / ¡Más rápido! ¡Más rápido! Written and Illustrated by Leslie Patricelli Candlewick Press • 2013 • 30 pages Board Book ($6.99) ISBN: 978-0-7636-6611-8 Ages 2-5
“Faster! Faster! / ¡Más rápido! ¡Más rápido!” comprises the principal text of this book, and on their own, the words are not enough to sustain a story. Fortunately, Leslie Patricelli’s brilliant illustrations are all readers will need to get the gist of this tale. The book begins with a little girl sitting on her dad’s back and pointing to a playful puppy nearby. Upon turning the page, readers find the little girl riding the playful pup, and presume that her vivid imagination has transformed her dad into a dog. (The dog sporting a similar tie as the dad may be the most obvious clue!)
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Together, daughter and dad/dog pass a rabbit, and the following page yields a girl clutching the fur (and tie) of a rabbit, her pigtails flying in the air. Each time they encounter a new, faster animal, Dad morphs into that animal. By the time a bird is shown, the simple text makes sense and the narrative has been established. The “bird” soars high into the sky and then plummets into the ocean, where it becomes a dolphin. The underwater world will reward sharp-eyed children and parents with cameos from Patricelli’s previous books. Upon reaching the shore, the last animal—a tired turtle—changes back into plain-old Dad, who in the eyes of this little girl fulfills the role of hero, for sure.
With this offering, Patricelli once again proves herself to be the master of concepts for the toddler and preschool crowd. Pair this one with the bilingual Higher! Higher! /¡Más alto! ¡Más alto! for a perfect complementary read.
—Reviewed by Kacy Vega, Arizona State University