Bogart and Vinnie: A Completely Made-Up Story of True Friendship

Audrey Vernick, illus. by Henry Cole. Walker, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-8027-2822-7
The heart wants what the hearts wants. Case in point: Vinnie, a "crazy-happy" dog (and seldom has a description been more apt) who wanders into a nature preserve for exotic animals and decides that his new best friend is Bogart, a hulking, solitude-loving rhino. "Nobody knew what attracted Vinnie to Bogart," Vernick (Brothers at Bat) muses. "Was it his color? His shape? His horn? His other horn? The way he completely ignored Vinnie?" Athough Bogart looks like he'd rather be anywhere than at Vinnie's side, this unlikely combo of perpetually panting irrepressibleness and weltschmerz—a yin and yang of expressiveness that Cole (Nelly May Has Her Say) illustrates with panache—becomes a global sensation and forms "the kind of family where one member loves the other and one wants nothing more than to be left alone. But still, a family." It's a witty, bighearted story that makes full use of this duo's comic talents while poking gentle fun at the human tendency to coo over interspecies friendships (and then turn them into children's books). Ages 4 – 8. Author's agent: Erin Murphy, Erin Murphy Literary Agency. (June)
Reviewed on: 07/08/2013
Release date: 06/18/2013
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