Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The TTLG 2011 Picture Book Celebration: Book one hundred and forty-four

I must confess that I wouldn't mind being one of the dogs in my house. They have a pretty comfortable life with premium food, brushings, walks, beds to sleep on, and lots of attention. They don't even have to deal with being alone during the day because my office is in my home. The dogs who you will meet in today's book all have problems that are upsetting them very much indeed. They have humans who just don't understand what it means to be a dog.

Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel
Illustrated by Janet Stevens
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 8
Harcourt, 2008, 978-0-15-204628-6
   If you are dog who is having problems with your humans (and the family cat) don’t panic. Help is at hand. All you have to do is to write to Mr. Mutt, who is a canine counselor. Mr. Mutt will answer your questions with care, and help you to reach your deserved “TOP DOG!” status.
  Mr. Mutts has helped countless dogs deal with all kinds of problems. For example, Overdressed from Oklahoma wrote to Mr. Mutts to complain about the way in which his humans are always dressing him up in humiliating outfits. They put bunny ears on him at Easter, and dress him in a halo and wings at Christmas time. The poor dog is “the laughingstock of the block” and he desperately needs Mr. Mutt to tell him what to do. Thankfully, Mr. Mutt has some stellar advice for Overdressed. In fact, he has great advice for all the dogs who write to him, but his less than complimentary comments about cats are upsetting The Queen, the cat who lives with him. He had better watch out, because The Queen is getting very annoyed indeed.
   Children (and older readers) are sure to enjoy reading and looking at the illustrations in this hilarious picture book. Many of the commonplace problems experienced by dogs are explored, and readers are sure to find the building confrontation between Mr. Mutt and The Queen very amusing.

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