cover image Best Buddies

Best Buddies

Lynn Plourde, illus. by Arthur Lin. Capstone, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-68446-143-1

Former speech therapist Plourde, who worked with students with Down syndrome, pens this narrative centering the best friendship between an unnamed boy who, the back cover notes, has Down syndrome, and his basset hound, exploring what happens when the duo must adjust to the child attending school for the first time. Tracing the pair’s relationship to its start—when the sandy-haired, light-skinned boy was brought home from the hospital—in simple prose, Plourde follows them through road trips, beach vacations, weddings, and more, establishing their bond: “Like cake and frosting, the best buddies/ always stuck together.” Lin paints charming vignettes of family life, featuring cheery animation-style characters viewed through a nostalgic lens. This endearing portrait of human-canine closeness illustrates a creative solution for those instructed to leave animal buddies at home. Ages 3–5. (Aug.)