From Publishers Weekly
Performers of all descriptions cavort across Ehlert's ( Color Zoo ; Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf ) pages, rendered as iridescent geometric shapes against dramatic black backdrops. Along with classic circus acts--a bareback rider, a fierce lion, "the world's biggest elephant"--are unusual, eccentric choices: a pair of leaping lizards, a band of marching snakes and "those marvelous musclemen, the Pretzel brothers, who form a towering human pyramid." These dazzling artistes are introduced by a ringing text that captures the voice--alliterative, hyperbolic, a tad bombastic--of a grand circus master. Ehlert's characteristically vibrant colors and exhilarating style find even broader scope under the big top. Performed with panache, her junket gives new life to a favorite children's venue and is well worth the price of admission. Ages 3-6.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 2-- Just when you think this author/illustrator can take her cut-paper collage style no further, she delights readers with another dazzling display of her talents. This latest offering is a tour de force. After some exuberant preliminaries, a colorful master of ceremonies welcomes readers to ``the greatest circus on earth.'' They are then treated to a series of double-spreads depicting an array of performers: Hugo, the world's biggest elephant; the Pretzel brothers; Samu the tiger; marching snakes and leaping lizards; the flying Zucchinis; a lion and his tamer--and of course, cotton candy, snow cones, and a lovable clown. The text consists of the ringmaster's running monologue as he directs the crowd's attention and reactions, and is less effective than the art. The genius of the work lies in the illustrations. Each spread compels children to look and look again at the way color and shapes combine to create characters that enchant both the sophisticated and untrained eye. --Eve Larkin, Middleton Public Library, WI
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.