louieSmelly Louie
Catherine Rayner
(Macmillan Children’s Books)

Louie smells, and it is definitely not of roses. But he loves his smell, and after he is given a bath by his well-meaning family, he is adamant that I will find his smell again, so off he goes on a journey fill of pong and adventure.
Rayner’s magnificient brush and pencil strokes and perfect use of colour manage to convey Louie’s scruffiness and even his odour perfectly onto the page. Yet, the reader will be compelled to want to hug him. From splashes of mud to bath bubbles, the artwork is so textured, readers are completely immersed in it.  Rayner is an outstanding artist, with an exceptional ability to draw animals which shines through once again. Her artwork is always teamed with charming  and amusing stories full of tenderness. Louie is such a lovable dog despite his bad habits and little readers will love him, as well as all the other local fauna he comes across on his quest.  It is just glorious, like all of Catherine Rayner’s books.

Buy Smelly Louie here


bestfriendsBest Friends
Mara Bergman & Nicola Slater
(Hodder Children’s Books)

Dexter, Daisy and Lily are creating havoc for their young owners while walking in the park. Muddy streams, picnic rugs, nothing in their path stops their run – but where are they heading to?
With a lovely rhyming text and bright, child-friendly illustrations, Best friends is a joyous celebration of friendship, whether it is human or canine! With plenty of positive images of enjoying the great outdoors, this is definitely one to read before going off to enjoy a play in the park, with or without a four-legged friend. However it also celebrates the bond between child and pooch, which young dog owners will be able to relate to, particularly as there are some of all shapes and sizes in this book. With lots to spot in the illustrations (including the other dogs who are “hiding”), this a really lovely read for dog-loving preschoolers.

Buy Best Friends here



dogbookIs There a Dog in this Book?
Vivian Schwartz
(Walker Books)

Something smells not quite right in this book. Has someone infiltrated Tiny, André and Moonpie’s story? And can this someone possibly be …. a dog?!? Can readers help them solve the mystery?
Vivian Schwartz’s  beloved cats are back in a third interactive adventure which will once again delight readers, young and old. Her ingenious use of flaps and active inclusion of the reader in the story has made this series an absolute winner and the addition of a new hairy character brings out the cats’ wacky and erratic behaviour to great comic effect. Schwartz’s exuberant artwork oozes fun and helps to create another innovative and intelligent tale which,  amongst all the zany fun behaviour, also highlights a gentle message of acceptance, friendship  and not judging on first impressions. Is There a Dog in this Book? is bound to become a family favourite.

Buy Is There a Dog in this Book? here



Source: review copies from publisher