cover image Dog in Cat Out CL

Dog in Cat Out CL

Gillian Rubinstein. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH), $13.95 (1pp) ISBN 978-0-395-66596-1

Using only the four words contained in the title and limber watercolor, pen-and-ink art, Rubinstein and James affectionately evoke the daily rounds of a bustling household--and teach a short course on clock-watching. Three-fourths of each spread is devoted to an illustration of a busy family made up of two parents, three children, one dog and one cat. The far-left quarter, however, is reserved for a line drawing of an old-fashioned clock (with dog and cat substituting for the traditional cuckoo) to indicate the time, and text that affords a toddler's perspective on the day's sequence: ``Dog out, cat in'' at seven o'clock, as Dad serves the pooch breakfast on the porch and Mom, holding the cat, forages through the refrigerator; ``Dog out, cat in'' once more at two o'clock, as Mom, youngest child and cat settle in for a nap while the dog peers in through the window, but 15 minutes later the dog has joined the nappers and the cat leaps out the window (``Dog in, cat out''). Kids will have the concept down--and their thumbs up. Ages 3-6. (Aug.)