Saturday, April 25, 2009

Book Review: The Doghouse by Jan Thomas

Book: The Doghouse
Author: Jan Thomas
Illustrator: Jan Thomas
Published: 2008

As Mouse, Pig, Duck, and Cow are playing ball, their ball bounces into the doghouse. The big doghouse. The dark doghouse. The doghouse surrounded by scary trees and a general aura of danger. Now the question is . . . who will retrieve it?

I've been meaning to review one of Jan Thomas' books for awhile now. She seems to be firing on all cylinders at the moment. Her books are snappily written, hilarious, easily readable even for beginners, and feature bright, expressive, simple illustrations that catch kids' eyes. It's the kind of writing and art that make people go, "Gosh, I could do that!" Silly people. Silly, silly people. It's easy to do; it's hard to do well.

The thing I loved best about The Doghouse is the unabashed self-preservation of Mouse. Let somebody go in that big, dark, scary doghouse, not him. And of course, the ending shows that our fears are never as huge as they seem.

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