Friday, December 6, 2013

A Dawg and His Person

Here they are: Clyde and Dawg

Author, Lori Mortensen
I'm taking time out from posts about the cruise to share a charming picture book that would make just the right present for a young child in this gift-giving season: Cowpoke Clyde and Dirty Dawg, by Lori Mortensen. (It would make a nice library addition for big people, too, if they are dog lovers, as I am.)

The story starts with Cowpoke Clyde cleaning house and innocently deciding the finishing touch would be to give a bath to his dog, who is named, appropriately, Dawg. What happens when Clyde tries is hilarious. I really don't know how much to tell without giving the story away. Let me just say that bathing Dawg is no easy thing. The two leave chaos and commotion in their wake as Dawg gives Clyde the runaround.

Three things about the writing make this a stellar picture book for me.
1. The tone and "bounce" to this lively story make it one kids will want to read again and again. (Those who are too young to read will want you to read it aloud again and again.)
2. It's funny. I've read it three times, now, and each time leaves me grinning.
3. The rhyme scans so well! I have great admiration for the ability to write a rhyming stories. They are not easy. Often the rhyme feels a little off, and you feel a writer got away with it because the story was so good. Well, this story is "so good," and the rhyming is too!

As for the illustrations: With acrylics and colored pencils, Michael Allen Austin has made Dawg into the most lovable mutt you could find—and the other animals on the ranch are pretty captivating, too. Cowpoke Clyde is pawstively endearing.

School Library Journal has calledthis book, "A first purchase for most libraries."

Two other rhyming picture books by Lori Mortensen are: In the Trees, Honey Bees, that has won all kinds of awards, as well as the award-winning Cindy Moo. She's also written a non-rhyming biography about Léon Foucault, Come See the Earth Turn. 

Foucalt's Pendulum'

Hey, diddle-diddle.
Find out about the secret
life of bees.

You can read my review of Cindy Moo for Sacramento Book Review HERE.

And Lori was kind enough to give me an interview HERE.

More information about where and how to buy these books can be found on Lori's
 WEBSITE HERE. Visit the site, too, to read more reviews of these books.

What are your favorite picture books? Do you prefer rhyming books or unrhymed stories?


Kimberly said...

This sounds super cute! Congrats to Lori on the book!

Kenda Turner said...

Love your description of "bounce." That alone makes me want to read this and maybe pass it on to the little ones. Thanks for the review :-) And I do like rhyming books when they flow musically, without any 'clinkers'...

Luanne G. Smith said...

I love that cover. I wish had some little ones to read it to. :)

Julia Hones said...

Thank you for this wonderful recommendation. I love this kind of book for my daughter, Elizabeth.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hi, Kimberly. Super cute is the word. (Words?) It's one of the cutest PBs I've read.

Kenda, thanks for stopping by. If you read it, you won't be disappointed, and the little ones won't be, for sure.

Hi, L. G. The cover really captures the tone of the story. Michael Allen Austin was a good pick.

Julia, I hope you get it for your daughter. She'll be full of giggles for a long time.

Cathy said...

I adore picture books with dogs! It sounds like it would make a perfect read-aloud in library storytime programs as well as in preschools and primary grades. With it having been published by Clarion, I am sure it will sell well, and deservedly so!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing about this author and this absolutely darling book :)

Rosi said...

Thanks for the review, Elizabeth. I haven't read this one yet, but I sure will now.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Cathy, yes, it's definitely a read-aloud book. The beat is wonderful and just moves that story along. And the kids will love the pictures.

Catherine, thanks for stopping by. Glad you liked the discovery.

Rosi, you'll like it. Especially since you are into rhyming poetry for children.

Tanya Reimer said...

Oh this sounds perfect! We only get to bath our St Bernard twice a year. She has a phobia of water and well... she's a smart puppy. You can imagine the rest. It takes all four of us, a large open area where everyone can see us. Bathing suits and a few hours. Fun. lol. I a so excited to look this one up!

Barbara Watson said...

Picture books are my favorite gifts to give.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Tanya, when we had our dog, he was not fond of baths either. We had to do it outside on a warm day, with the hose. Then, of course, he had to go roll in the grass afterwards. :-)

Barbara, they do make lovely gifts. Thanks for stopping by.

Unknown said...

I really appreciate your format. It tells me everything I want to know about the book. Sounds wonderful, my six year old grandson has a very keen sense of humor so this sounds perfect!

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hi, Pam, I think your grandson is just the right age to enjoy this book. You will too!

Victoria Lindstrom said...

Thanks for the wonderful book recommendation, Elizabeth. Happy Holidays!

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hi, Victoria. Happy Holidays to you, too. This is my favorite time of year, even if it IS colder than usual. :-)