THE THREE PUPPIES AND THE BIG BAD FLEA

Ted Lish, Author, Charles Jordan, Illustrator
Ted Lish, Author, Charles Jordan, Illustrator , illus. by Charles Jordan. Munchweiler $15.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-7940-0000-4
Library Binding - 978-0-7940-0001-1
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Lish makes his debut with what proves to be an inane twist on the Three Little Pigs. Warned by their mama to "watch out for the big bad flea," a trio of heedless puppies sets off to seek their fortunes. The First Little Puppy builds a house of feathers, the Second Little Puppy chooses leaves, while the Third Little Puppy selects cast-off shoes. Why a flea needs to blow down a house in order to get at a puppy goes unexplained, but there's huffing and puffing aplenty before the flea bites the first two pups and then sneaks through the keyhole of No. 3's house. The story ends limply, with the flea chasing out the pups and raising "billions and billions" of children in the house of shoes, and with the puppies "learn[ing] a valuable lesson about listening to their mama" and moving far away from the flea. Jordan's (The Whale Comedian) cartoonish colored-pencil illustrations, rendered in a dull palette, fail to redeem the proceedings. Ages 4-8. (June)

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