That Dog!

That Dog!

4.05 (18 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Paperback
By (author)  , Illustrated by 

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Product details

  • Paperback | 64 pages
  • 120 x 180mm
  • Random House Children's Publishers UK
  • Corgi Childrens
  • London, United Kingdom
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • Ill.
  • 0552521477
  • 9780552521475

Review Text

Physically, this is more a picture book than anything else - with a comical drawing on every page or two, and the wrong typography (as well as some of the wrong words) for an easy reader. But it belongs in the hands of first-to-third graders: children of an age to appreciate Ben's spoofy responses to neighbor Mrs. Higgs - and others - chronic complaints about his dog, Barnum, and Barnum's somewhat ambiguous pet/pal status. To Mrs. Higgs' "He's snarling," Ben replies: "He's smiling." When she says he's sniffing in her grocery basket - "he was simply offering to carry it home." At the park, Barnum's favorite game is "chasing little spoiled dogs whose owners would pick them up, just when the game was getting good." And, as the occasion arises (food-at-the-table, floor-or-bed), Ben and Barnum out-maneuver his parents too. "Then, one day, Barnum died." Ben is miserable, but neither he nor the text goes soft. (Mr. Johnson, across the street, suggests that maybe God needed Barnum. "I wish God had needed Mrs. Higgs," says Ben. "No," says Mr. Johnson. "She might have caused a lot of trouble. . . Barnum was a better choice.") In the same casual, sidelong fashion, Ben does eventually get a new pup - and Mrs. Higgs has the first cranky word. Barnum is not quite out of Thurber, but he's along those same knowing, near-human lines. Sympathetic and tart - for non-sentimentalists. (Kirkus Reviews)show more

Rating details

18 ratings
4.05 out of 5 stars
5 39% (7)
4 33% (6)
3 22% (4)
2 6% (1)
1 0% (0)
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