If You Give a Dog a Donut

Laura Numeroff, illus. by Felicia Bond. HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-06-026683-7
These veteran collaborators don’t stray from the tried-and-true recipe for their If You Give... series in this addition, a buoyant, circular story in which a canine’s spiraling free association leads to a day’s worth of outdoor activities. As usual, Bond’s clean, action-filled pictures, set against white backdrops, imbue the title character with abundant personality as he skips and dances his way through the pages. After his young host gives him a donut, the dog requests apple juice—and then seconds. Since there isn’t any left, he skateboards outside to pick apples to make juice. Tossing an apple to the boy “make[s] him think of baseball,” so the two dabble in that sport, play pirates, have a water fight, and fly a kite, before the dog is again reminded of apple juice—and donuts. There’s a definite boy slant to this story, which is a nice complement to the more girl-oriented installments in the series. Even readers whose dogs are less demanding than this one are likely to recognize his boundless energy in their own pets. Ages 3–7. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/15/2011
Release date: 10/01/2011
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