A satisfying if melodramatic story of friendship found.


A little lost dog finds a home.

Perdu wanders the city, looking for his “somewhere.” The book’s first spread, with Perdu buffeted by wind and rain at the city’s edge, establishes great pathos, tugging at the hearts of dog lovers: “Poor Perdu. A little lost dog, all alone….” A White girl (city sidewalks bustle with racially diverse pedestrians) in a winter hat the same color as Perdu’s bright red scarf is the only person who treats Perdu with compassion. That everyone else angrily shoos away (“Horrible animal!”) this adorable dog, described as “a scared little ball of worry,” seems unrealistic. Nevertheless, it certainly bodes well for the bond the girl establishes with him when, after a disastrous visit to a cafe, she picks up the scarf he lost in the confusion, finds him, and takes him home. The text includes pleasing moments of lyricism: “He watched a leaf tumble through the air and land with a whispery tap on the water.” There are also little details sure to delight young animal lovers: At one point, Perdu walks through the city with his nails creating a “Tip, Tip, Tip” sound on the concrete. Color is used effectively. In the bustling city, tiny black-and-brown Perdu is juxtaposed with tall, colorless buildings, his vibrant scarf always catching the eye, and the page is awash in red when the cafe-goers yell at him, scaring him away.

A satisfying if melodramatic story of friendship found. (Picture book. 5-10)

Pub Date: April 1, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-68263-248-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Peachtree

Review Posted Online: Feb. 9, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2021

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Hee haw.

Reader Votes

  • Readers Vote
  • 36

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

  • IndieBound Bestseller


The print version of a knee-slapping cumulative ditty.

In the song, Smith meets a donkey on the road. It is three-legged, and so a “wonky donkey” that, on further examination, has but one eye and so is a “winky wonky donkey” with a taste for country music and therefore a “honky-tonky winky wonky donkey,” and so on to a final characterization as a “spunky hanky-panky cranky stinky-dinky lanky honky-tonky winky wonky donkey.” A free musical recording (of this version, anyway—the author’s website hints at an adults-only version of the song) is available from the publisher and elsewhere online. Even though the book has no included soundtrack, the sly, high-spirited, eye patch–sporting donkey that grins, winks, farts, and clumps its way through the song on a prosthetic metal hoof in Cowley’s informal watercolors supplies comical visual flourishes for the silly wordplay. Look for ready guffaws from young audiences, whether read or sung, though those attuned to disability stereotypes may find themselves wincing instead or as well.

Hee haw. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: May 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-545-26124-1

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Dec. 29, 2018

Did you like this book?

The dynamic interaction between the characters invites readers to take risks, push boundaries, and have a little unscripted...


Reinvention is the name of the game for two blobs of clay.

A blue-eyed gray blob and a brown-eyed brown blob sit side by side, unsure as to what’s going to happen next. The gray anticipates an adventure, while the brown appears apprehensive. A pair of hands descends, and soon, amid a flurry of squishing and prodding and poking and sculpting, a handsome gray wolf and a stately brown owl emerge. The hands disappear, leaving the friends to their own devices. The owl is pleased, but the wolf convinces it that the best is yet to come. An ear pulled here and an extra eye placed there, and before you can shake a carving stick, a spurt of frenetic self-exploration—expressed as a tangled black scribble—reveals a succession of smug hybrid beasts. After all, the opportunity to become a “pig-e-phant” doesn’t come around every day. But the sound of approaching footsteps panics the pair of Picassos. How are they going to “fix [them]selves” on time? Soon a hippopotamus and peacock are staring bug-eyed at a returning pair of astonished hands. The creative naiveté of the “clay mates” is perfectly captured by Petty’s feisty, spot-on dialogue: “This was your idea…and it was a BAD one.” Eldridge’s endearing sculpted images are photographed against the stark white background of an artist’s work table to great effect.

The dynamic interaction between the characters invites readers to take risks, push boundaries, and have a little unscripted fun of their own . (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: June 20, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-316-30311-8

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: March 29, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2017

Did you like this book?