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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Chick 'n' Pug, written and illustrated by Jennifer Sattler. Bloomsbury, Penguin. 2010. $18.50 ages 4 and up

"Pug wasn't exactly paying

Wait. What's that? A twitch?

A wiggle?


There just isn't enough excitement in Chick's life. After all, reading 'The Adventures of Wonder Pug' has got the heart beating faster and the need for adventure front and center. It isn't long until a lazy, slumbering pug comes into view and Chick is convinced that this particular dog is just what the doctor ordered. He must have adventure at his very core, despite his rather lethargic countenance.

No matter what Pug does, Chick is convinced that he is ripe for adventure. A yawn produces a 'flutter' of excitement, as does his trying to get out of an annoying and cloying sweater. The fun comes in Chick's inability to face the truth of the matter. Always misinterpreting Pug's action will cause listeners quick giggles and a need for repeated readings.

The expressive Chick is patient while waiting for Pug's to waken...dealing a hand of solitaire, checking the time, tapping toes and even chewing grass while lying there watching the clouds roll by. Chick is, in turn, endearing,  hopeful, concerned, and determined to encourage his new friend. Pug suffers this new friend with indifference, worry and finally, gracious acceptance. The expressive artwork gives us characters to love and admire. No one is more upbeat and encouraging than Chick. No one could possibly be as relaxed and apparently unconcerned as Pug. They are a perfect match!

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