Never Cry Woof!
. Scholastic Press . NY ,
PZ7.W3325 Ne 2005 (Carlson Fable Collection, BIC bldg)
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This is a large-format book somewhat in the tradition of William Wegman. The book's title-page is actually about eight pages into the book. Each of the early pages has a single large picture of a dog in a human situation. The starting situations for Hunky-Dory and Bix on the first two pages are the same: they are looking for a job. An ad appears for a dog to guard sheep. A gazillion dogs applied for the job. Some were hired and some rejected. At that point the title-page intervenes and this story of contrasts gets specific. Bix has the attitude of Bring 'em on towards the wolves; Hunky-Dory is cautious and wants to follow the shepherd's rules. Rule #1 is Never Cry Woooof! unless you really need to. Bix cries Wooof! twice and Hunky-Dory and all the other dogs come to his rescue both times, only to be laughed at and humored. The third time proves to be disastrous for Bix; he receives no help, and the threat is real. One finds plenty of rhyme here, rapper's rhythms, and a good deal of punning. My favorite pun comes with the Lambulance. Hunky-Dory's reflection on Bix' last woof is typical: Twice wasn't nice, but a third is absurd. There are also lots of crazy hats on the dogs. The last page says See Ewe.