Monday, November 18, 2019

Review - Lucky Dogs: Shake Paws

Lucky Dogs: Shake Paws
by Cody L. Clark
illustrated by Kate Fallahee
Date: 2019
Publisher: Cody L. Clark
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 24
Format: e-book
Source: NetGalley

Just when Mayor Ruby thought Dogwood was the quietest town on the planet, she discovers an uproar of emotion from the residents. Wiley, the new snout in town has created the friction. It is up to Mayor Ruby to pull Dogwood back together!

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This picture book has the kernel of a good idea and charming illustrations. Unfortunately, it also has a lot of issues, mostly of the technical variety.

The dogs of Dogwood are hanging out at their favourite restaurant when a strange dog shows up and orders the spiciest thing on the menu. He looks intimidating, and the other dogs are wary of the stranger. But the mayor, Ruby, introduces herself and finds out why the new dog has come to town. Then the dogs greet their new friend and accept him into the pack, and they all have fun in the snow.

I can see that the author was trying to be punny, and there is the potential for a lot of good wordplay here. But it's kind of overshadowed by the technical issues with the writing. Commas aren't used very well, some sentences are kind of fragmented, and the adverb use is a little much. The new dog is also never properly introduced. One moment he's "the strange dog", and the next he's suddenly "Wiley". I'm also not clear on why one of the other dogs demanded Wiley leave after he ate the chowder; I actually thought I might have missed a page, because it didn't seem related to what had come immediately before.

The illustrations are the strongest part of the book. The dogs have great facial expressions, and there are plenty of different breeds represented.

Overall, I'm not that impressed. The story is too simple (and a little preachy) and the writing isn't that strong. The basic idea of the book is okay... but the execution is a bit lacking.

Thank you to NetGalley and Cody L. Clark for providing a digital ARC.

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

Enjoyment: 1/5

Overall: 2.17 out of 5

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