Synopses & Reviews
Award-winning author-illustrator Bob Staake has created a rollicking picture book about a boy and his most unusual pet!
Most pets are cats and dogs, but what happens when a boy wants a different kind of pet, one that doesn’t meow or bark? Bob Staake’s exuberant tale of a little boy and the pet of his dreams will appeal to anyone whose best friends are... books! Books make the perfect pets, the boy decides, and chooses a bright red one. When it goes missing, a lively adventure is in store for readers who love a happy ending. Soon kids everywhere will wish for a pet book of their very own.
"Staake, whose wordless Bluebird depicted a lonesome outsider, introduces a happier child, albeit one allergic to cats. 'I want a pet that's easy!' the boy declares, so his pleased parents steer him to a bookshop, where he chooses 'a frisky red hardcover.' Staake's bouncy hero resembles a Photoshop version of Crockett Johnson's Harold as he casually walks his obedient book across a chaotic city bridge, oblivious to the mischief of real dogs and cats. In the only spread to picture him reading, he imagines battling a fairy-tale dragon and a purple octopus, reveling in 'tales/ Of awesomeness and glory.' All is well until his book goes missing, and the family maid fears she has given it 'to charity' while cleaning house. There are some missteps (like that anachronistic, uniformed maid), and a few stanzas include words and phrases that feel like filler ('Most pets, you know, are cats and dogs/ Go out and take a look./ But there's a boy in Smartytown/ Whose pet is... a little book'). The appeal of a good book gets lost in the fray, despite much entertaining stage business in Staake's images. Ages 3 7. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Bob Staake is the creator of many books for children, including Bluebird; The Red Lemon, a 2006 New York Times Best Illustrated Book; The Donut Chef, a Children's Choice Book Awards finalist; and Look! A Book! He's also a prolific and highly acclaimed commercial illustrator whose work has appeared in the New Yorker, Time, the Washington Post, and the New York Times.