My dog Dash by Nicki Greenberg
Allen and Unwin, 2016. ISBN 9781760110673
(Ages: 4-8) Recommended. Imagination, Pets. Dash is not your ordinary dog (he is a snail), but to this little girl with a big imagination, he is the perfect pet dog. The young girl, who has unbridled enthusiasm for life, tells us in first-person about Dash: from his slow start at puppy school, to his constant slobbering and his slow walking pace. She is mainly optimistic about Dash's downfalls as a dog; he can't fetch yet, but he'll get there; he takes forever to go for a walk . . . but it's because he has to lick every flower, and leaf, and stick. Her attempts to teach Dash standard dog tricks are humorous, as are her attempts to blame her naughtiness on him. Children will also enjoy the ending, in which Dash meets another dog from down the street. 'WE'VE GOT PUPPIES!' she shouts, before asking the reader 'Do you want one?'
On all pages, the picture tells a slightly different story to the text, or provides extra information, making it a great book to stimulate inferential thinking and discussion. The question posed to the reader at the end of the story also provides a great opportunity for further conversation. At its heart, this is a book about imagining the world as you want it to be, and in that way is reminiscent of Prudence Wants a Pet, a title that is loved by children.
It is a joy for the young and the youthful, with interesting illustrations and fantastic text-illustration arrangements. My Dog Dash will appeal to pet owners, pet lovers and everyone in between.