I Didn't Do It

Patricia MacLachlan and Emily MacLachlan Charest, illus. by Katy Schneider, HarperCollins/Tegen, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-06-135833-3
Whoooooooo's a good doggie? In this follow-up to Once I Ate a Pie (2006), the soulful-eyed canine poets certainly believe they are. The narrator of one poem declares: "I'm perfect./ I know because they tell me so," which mitigates the fact that "I only chewed one thing, one time." In "Rules," it's asserted that obedience is a state of mind: "Here are my rules:/ Eat all you want./ Sleep when you want—/ On the couch/ On the bed/ On your silk pillow./ Drooling is good." Once again, this mother-daughter team's short, blank verses and Schneider's boldly brush-stroked portraits unleash the adorable canine id in all its (mostly) unrepentant, cuddly glory without teetering into preciousness. Ages 4–8. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/09/2010
Release date: 10/01/2010
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