cover image Smudge


Julie Sykes / Author, Jane Chapman / Joint Author Little Tiger

In this slight story from the creators of Dora's Eggs, Smudge the dog is playing outside with his rabbit and mouse friends when a summer shower takes them by surprise. After a series of failed efforts to find shelter, Smudge remembers the narrow exit for the cat: "" `It's easy,' said Smudge, as he poked his nose through the cat door. And it was easy until... he got stuck!"" Oversize type adds emphasis. Sykes creates a humorous rapport between the dog of questionable ideas and his follower friends, but the story lacks oomph. Airy illustrations set the damp trio against simple backgrounds of flowers and raindrops, and the drawings' agile lines bring out the slapstick humor. While Smudge is a charming bumbler, all eagerness and big feet, readers' interest will likely last not much longer than the passing shower the book describes. Ages 3-7. (Sept.)