cover image Smedge


Andrew Sharmat. MacMillan Publishing Company, $13.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-02-782261-8

To Mr. and Mrs. Pettey, Smedge is just an ordinary pet dog, though lately he's been afflicted with boredom and a loss of appetite. Unbeknownst to the Petteys, however, Smedge (aka Sir Winston Scott) has embarked on a diplomatic career ever since receiving a birthday present of a vested suit and a briefcase. After giving a speech to the National Hot Dog Association, sailing at the yacht club, and ending the ``Bokastani-Dengli War,'' Smedge is invited by the president to a luncheon for the Queen of Kingwich. Eventually Smedge becomes the ``only prisoner . . . arrested for biting a queen at a luncheon'' and the ``first diplomat . . . to receive a medal for biting a queen at a luncheon.'' The Petteys, meanwhile, remain unaware of Smedge's ``other life.'' Demarest's cartoon illustrations are cheerfully bright and busy, creating a rollicking atmosphere for Sharmat's satirical, humorous text. Smedge's dual personality should appeal to younger readers while the political satire should amuse an older audience. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)