Adam Stower

One morning Lily finds a “dog” in her garden. She has always wanted a pet so is more than happy to adopt this one. Despite its cumbersome size, its obvious laziness and its unusual appetite, Doggy makes a great pet and they have the best day together. But Lily’s mum does not seem to agree and so Lily must reluctantly put “Found” posters around the neighbourhood. Unsurprisingly, the owner soon turns up, desperate to get his “pet” back. Poor Lily is heartbroken, but will she stay without a pet for long?

Silly Doggy! is one of my favourite picture books of the year so far; it is just so gorgeous! The story is both hilarious and touching at times and the artwork is beautifully executed and coloured. We really like Adam Stower’s work in the Library Mice household. My children really engage with his work and I think the fact that it manages to portray both innocence and mischief simultaneously really talks to them! I find his work to be beautifully clear and realistic but also vibrant and so much fun. His artwork just oozes joy and mirth and energy, I dare you not to be feel uplifted after reading one of his books. And Silly Doggy! is no exception; I love the palette of colours used here, which not only compliments the story but helps enhance its sense of happiness; in fact the tones only get less vibrant on the spreads when Lily is sad (when she is putting the “found” posters up, or when she is in bed after Doggy has gone back to its rightful owner).

There are a lot of visual jokes and clues throughout the story which will delight young audiences (such as how Lily seems oblivious to the real nature of her pet!), as well as the adult readers. I personally loved how the newspaper articles on both endpapers work with the story, rounding it up nicely.

Silly Doggy! really is a sweet, charming book and great for storytime too. It will delight pet and animal lovers of course but I think it will be enjoyed by anybody who likes a perfectly executed picture book. The dust jacket even unfolds into a lovely poster!
Highly recommended.

All illustrations Ó Adam Stower
Many thanks to Templar Publishing for sending me a review copy of “Silly Doggy!”.