cover image Apocalypse Bow Wow

Apocalypse Bow Wow

James Proimos III, illus. by James Proimos Jr. Bloomsbury, $13.99 (224p) ISBN 978-1-61963-442-8

In this uninhibitedly wacky collaboration by Year in the Jungle illustrator Proimos and his son, two dogs find that their owners have disappeared in a kind of Rapture moment along with all the other humans on Earth: “Clotheslines were ablaze. Humans vanished from moving automobiles. Animals were totally losing it.” Brownie and Apollo’s initial imprisonment in their own house creates a real sense of grief as readers watch the dogs realize that their owners are never coming back. But they manage to escape, as Brownie explains: “I licked our doorknob and made a deer crash through our window, and that’s how we got out.” The nearest grocery store has food, but is already claimed by animal adversaries. Fortunately, a flea who has read Sun Tzu advises Brownie, whispering military strategies in his ear: “If you don’t seek out allies and helpers, then you will be isolated and weak.” The elder Proimos’s artwork, a mix of full-page scene and panel sequences, is a potent combination of unhinged energy and poignant sentiment, giving it an off-kilter charm. Ages 8–12. Agent: Joanna Volpe, New Leaf Literary & Media. (Jan.)