Saturday, April 9, 2011

The TTLG 2011 Picture Book Celebration: Book Ninety-Nine

Not long ago one of my dogs stopped eating his food and he moped around looking miserable. I took him to the vet, but we could not figure out what was wrong. He was listless, had a fever, and clearly felt poorly, but none of the tests gave us the information we needed. As I looked into Pinot's sad eyes, I wished he could tell me what he was feeling. If only he could communicate with me to tell me what his symptoms were.

Today's book is about a little boy who also wishes he could talk to his dog. I am sure young pet owners and their families will enjoy this title.

Talk, Oscar, Please!Karen Kaufman Orloff
Illustrated by Tim Bowers
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 7
Sterling, 2011, 978-1-4027-6563-6
   Oscar is dog who can yip, howl, bark, growl, whimper, and wheeze. The one thing that he cannot do is talk. More than anything Oscar’s little boy wishes his pet could communicate using human speech. If Oscar could talk, he could go to school, coach the little boy’s soccer team, or go to a restaurant. If Oscar could talk the two of them could chat while they played together, and the little boy knows that Oscar, unlike his big brother, wouldn’t “tease.”
   Imagine all the things Oscar could do if he could really talk. Why, he could tell the vet what is wrong with him when he is ill, he could be in a quiz show, he could talk on the phone, and he could even sing the little boy dog lullabies at night.
   Most young pet owners have wished at some point that they could communicate with their cat, dog, hamster, or goldfish. This picture book explores one little boy’s dream, but it also shows that perhaps one doesn’t need one’s pet to talk to be able to understand what they are saying. After all, a close connection between the best of friends does not need really need the use of words. Does it?
   With a clever rhyming text and warm ‘feel good’ illustrations, this is a picture book story that is sure to resonate with young pet owners.

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