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Friday, September 11, 2015

Dojo Daytrip, written and illustrated by Chris Tougas. Owlkid Books, 2015. $16.95 ages 3 and up

"Master winds up
in the trough.
While little ninjas
scamper off -
Scaring scarecrows,
freeing chicks,
Giving fences
roundhouse kicks.

It's a big barnyard

Are you sure there are only six of them? Once unloaded at the farm for their field trip, they seem to multiply and wreak havoc whenever there is the slightest chance of it. We have been with these ninjas before - remember, we met them at their daycare.

They are extremely happy to be at the farm, with Master in the lead. A visit to the pig's pen lands Master in trouble and allows the tiny ninjas to get up to roundhouse kicks (their speciality) and any manner of mayhem. Oops! They forget all about Master and his plight. (It seems they often forget their creed: 'Always help someone in need.' )

We are alerted to the next difficulty for Master when we see a snorting bull eying the red scarf he found in the pigpen. No milking cows for Master. He is off at a run, to save himself from disaster. The tiny ninjas are aping the chase with a feed bag. No matter what he tries to show his charges, Master ends up in one disastrous situation after another.

As they did in their previous adventure, the ninjas finally remember that they need to help him. Then, they get to work and finish up the farm work, impressing their Master with their prowess. He is suitably moved!

Chris Tougas fills the pages with details that will have young readers hooting, and wanting more. Bold colors, expressive eyes, fun, humor and adventure leave fans eagerly anticipating the next installment.


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