Books by Daniel J. Mahoney

A REALLY GOOD SNOWMAN by Daniel J. Mahoney
ANIMALS
Released: Oct. 17, 2005

Mahoney again extols the benefits of cooperation, bringing back the animal cast from The Saturday Escape (2002) for a snowman-building contest in the park. Jack's pesky little sister Nancy wants to help, but since the rules say only three per team—and Jack already has two friends—she's on her own. When Nancy's solo project is attacked by bullies, though, Jack does some soul searching and leaves his buddies to lend her a paw. Nicely reflecting the tale's intimacy and light tone, the author creates a snowy, spacious landscape in which snowmen of diverse, often humorous design, and their small, furry, well-bundled-up creators mingle. In the end, Nancy's snow bear doesn't win the prize—but Jack discovers that he's had such a good time helping her that it really doesn't matter, and home they go, hand in hand. A well-crafted, low-key tale, more warming than a cup of steaming cider. (Picture book. 6-8)Read full book review >
THE PERFECT CLUBHOUSE by Daniel J. Mahoney
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 19, 2004

It's that ancient urge: a room of one's own; better yet, a clubhouse of mates. But the four friends from The Saturday Escape (2001) soon learn that one dog's dream clubhouse doesn't jibe with that of the goat or horse or pig. After all the camaraderie of building the house, the spirit of the place melts into air as the friends pursue their separate interests. They soon enough discover that a clubhouse can be a home of many rooms, and all becomes right in their small world—until, of course, they start thinking about how to make it better still. If the story line isn't especially memorable—it turns on epiphany rather than narrative inventiveness—the telling is: "Stanley Bartholomew! What did I tell you about conducting science experiments in the house?" "But Mom . . . We're pushing back the frontiers of knowledge." And the art is in another league altogether, with multiple panels of genial, graphic watercolors that ought to light a spark in young readers to start building. (Picture book. 4-7)Read full book review >
THE SATURDAY ESCAPE by Daniel J. Mahoney
ANIMALS
Released: March 18, 2002

All play and no work gets Jack the bear, Angie the rabbit, and Melden the mouse in some potentially hot water until they realize the folly of their ways. Story hour at the library looms, but Jack's room is a fright. "No story hour for you until you pick up your room," says his mom. Jack shoves the whole catastrophe under his bedcovers. He goes to gather Angie—a very tubular bunny; indeed, all the creatures have a disarmingly tubular shape that instantly endears them to the reader—but Angie has to practice the piano. They trick her father by playing a tape of her practicing the piano. At Melden's, they leave it to his young and reckless brothers to finish the paint job he has been asked to do. At the library story hour, the three young critters experience remorse over their various subterfuges. They're lucky they don't get caught red-handed, and even learn that a measure of teamwork gets their respective jobs done in no time. Responsibility doesn't seem so onerous when it is shared among pals, especially pals of such cartoony good cheer who also listen—albeit belatedly—to their conscience. (Picture book. 4-7)Read full book review >