cover image Who Says a Dog Goes Bow-Wow?

Who Says a Dog Goes Bow-Wow?

Hank De Zutter. Doubleday Books for Young Readers, $15 (1pp) ISBN 978-0-385-30659-1

By exploring the way different cultures render the sounds familiar animals are known for, this diverting, informative book gently prods preschoolers to think globally. De Zutter deserves credit for elbow grease, too, as he doesn't just round up the usual linguistic suspects: in addition to the expected European entries, he highlights languages as diverse as Ethiopian, Thai and Farsi. Aside from brief explanatory couplets at the beginning and end of the book (``Where people live and what language they're using / Determine what animals say to us humans''), the text consists simply of questions (``How does a rooster crow?'') followed by a list of appropriate sounds (Ko-kee-o in Korean, Wo-wo-wo in Chinese, Guggeru-guuhh in Swiss German--and, of course, Cock-a-doodle-doo in American English). Savvy readers will recognize MacDonald's ( Alphabatics ; Numblers ) artistic mentor here (her inscription is to Eric Carle, for sharing his singular jewel-toned tissue paper collage technique), but no matter if the artwork is a bit derivative. MacDonald obviously had fun with this one: her expressive menagerie (the pigs are particularly fetching) romps joyously across the pages in bursts of color. This whirlwind zoological tour is just the ticket for story-hour fare. Ages 4-10. (Feb.)