Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Small Readers: Meet Woof & Quack by Jamie A. Swenson, illustrated by Ryan Sias

Picture book author Jamie Swenson branches out into easy readers in this sweet new series about two oddball friends. Woof, a curly brown dog, and Quack, a green-headed duck, are looking for something to do. Quack has a great suggestion; they should play fetch! There’s just one problem: Woof doesn’t like to fetch. What kind of dog is he anyways? It’s a good thing Quack is just as quirky a duck as Woof is a dog and loves to fetch. The two have a great time playing their own version of the game and ending in the most tasty way, with cake everywhere!

Sias’ fuzzy illustrations show a cheerfully smiling pair, with brushed charcoal outlines and bold, colored backgrounds. There’s no indication in the text of gender, but the brief publisher’s description on the back notes Woof as male, saying “his new friend”. No gender is given for Quack.

This is a level H title, which is on the more difficult side of the emergent readers I collect; the text is not as simple as an Elephant and Piggie comic, although it follows a similar format with two quirky friends and the text all contained in speech balloons. It includes more challenging vocabulary like interesting, would, and fetch. It would be suitable for a reader ready to start moving along from emergent-level titles to more challenging easy readers.

Verdict: Cute and funny, although this isn’t likely to have hordes of specific fans like Pete the Cat, Elephant and Piggie, or Fly Guy, it’s a perfectly solid choice to fill the voracious need for easy reader comics. Recommended.
ISBN: 9780544959514; Published 2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; Borrowed from another library in my consortium

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