Mark Teague, . . Orchard, $16.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-439-91499-4
When Edward, a city-slicker dog, arrives at his canine relatives’ farm for a visit, Teague provides the perfect setup for this goofily sweet fish-out-of-water tale. As fans familiar with the antics of Teague’s other pooch—Ike from the Dear Mrs. LaRue books—might expect, the narrative nature of the crisp oil illustrations reveals a much more entertaining version of the story than does the straightforward text. The line, “In the woods, Edward helps make maple syrup,” accompanies a spread showing Edward stumbling through a clearing with his paw stuck in a bucket. And when “Edward and Judy go outside to tend the sheep,” Edward is shown petrified, having somehow hooked the leg of one unhappy looking ram. Young readers will find plenty to revisit in the humorous bucolic scenes of barnyard creatures at work and play. And though Edward never quite gets the hang of farm chores, kids will take heart that his bemused hosts are ever-tolerant of his botched efforts. Ages 4–8.
Reviewed on: 03/02/2009