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Circle Dogs

by Kevin Henkes
Illustrated by Dan Yaccarino

Published by Greenwillow, 1998
32 pages
ISBN: 0-688-15477-6

Ages 2 - 4

"In the big square house live two circle dogs./See the dogs? See the dogs? See the circles? Shh.They're sleeping now." Soon enough the two curled-up dachshunds awaken and stretch, and we are treated to the sights and sounds of everyday life with two lively dogs, as seen from the perspective of a small child. Henkes is right on target wtih his wry observations, from the clinking of dog tags and clacking of toenails to the stomp, whoosh, grrrowl, of the midday mail. Yaccarino's flat, stylized illustrations are at once sophisticated and childlike as they combine abstraction with the familiar and comforting repetition of circles and squares. There's an old-fashioned feel to the book as a whole: Henkes's intimate child-centered text rivals the best writing of Margaret Wise Brown, while Yaccarino's style is reminiscent of Esphyr Slobodkina's illustrations for Brown's classic, The Little Fireman (William Scott, 1938). Highly Commended, 1999, Charolotte Zolotow Award CCBC categories: Picture Books for Younger Children  © Cooperative Children's Book Center

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