Sunday, May 19, 2019

Review - The Poodle Who Barked at the Wind

The Poodle Who Barked at the Wind
by Charlotte Zolotow
illustrated by Valerie Coursen
Date: 1964
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 32
Format: e-book
Source: Open Library

The little black poodle barks at everything. She barks at the garbagemen and the telephone. She barks at the wind when it blows and the rain when it rains. Her family wonders why she makes so much noise, but they don’t really mind it. All but the father, that is. He’s a writer, and the barking makes him forget what he wants to say. Then one day the little poodle is left alone with him, and something happens that changes his mind for good.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

When I saw the title of this book, I had to have a look. When I was a kid, we had our own poodle (well, Maltipoo, actually) who barked at the wind... and the doorbell... and the mailman... Just like the dog in this book, really!

Aside from the premise, though, there's not a lot of plot. As it turns out, the dog only barks because she thinks she's being protective of the kids and mom. The dad realizes this and thinks it's cool. (Personally, I would've been a little offended that the dog didn't care whether I was safe or not, but this is from the 1960s, so I guess the dad is supposed to be brave and fearless.)

The newer illustrations (from 2002) are fine. The poodle's pretty cute, actually.

I don't know if I'd recommend this one. It's fine for people who have their own barking dog; they'll be able to relate. But I'm not sure if there's enough of a story to keep everyone else engaged.

Premise: 2/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 3/5
Illustrations: 3/5
Originality: 3/5

Enjoyment: 2/5

Overall: 2.5 out of 5

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