Books by Steven Bauer

Released: June 1, 2000

A free-ranging feline catalyzes community reaction in this pointed warning about the dangers of blindly obeying authority. Dazzled by Jeremiah Hoytie's magisterial appearance and bluff bonhomie, not to mention the free hot chocolate suddenly available at his gourmet deli, the contented residents of aptly named Felicity-By-The-Lake elect him mayor—only to find themselves victims of a power-hungry schemer and saddled with a dusk curfew plus other restrictive fiats. The citizens grumble, but Hoytie institutes a reign of terror, ordering his 7-foot-tall, 287-pound son Sam to grab scofflaws by their ankles and bring them in to pay fines. Returning to his birthplace after a long wander, Ulwazzer, a cat distinguished by fur that is sometimes one color, sometimes another, finds the people huddling in their houses, and the wildfowl on the lake (those that have survived Sam's indiscriminate blasting) huddling in the reeds. It's time to take matters into his own paws. Bauer (The Strange and Wonderful Tale of Robert McDoodle, 1999, etc.) heads the human cast with a familiar type: Daria, a kind young orphan girl forced to do all the Hoyties' cooking, housework, and storekeeping. Ultimately, she and Ulwazzer cleverly nudge the townsfolk into rising up to send the Hoyties packing. The carpetbaggers' pop-eyed cupidity comes through clearly in Raglin's occasional pen-and-ink caricatures. As farce, this is not in the same league with Dahl or Mahy, but Hoytie's stupid, selfish wife Prucilla provides some low comedy, and readers will relish seeing her, and her family, get what they deserve. (Fiction. 11-13)Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 1, 1999

The Strange And Wonderful Tale Of Robert McDoodle (32 pp.; $16.00; Sept.1; 0-689-80619-1): When he enrolls in the Jellicoe School for Dogs, soon-to-be-six Robert McDoodle is dismayed to discover that being a dog involves more than just bones and naps. In spirited rhyming text, Robert (now "Spot") and his canine classmates trot at breakneck speed through a day filled with lessons in sniffing, panting, nipping, snapping, and more. Sneed's comical illustrations show Robert and pals from a dog's- eye-view, gazing longingly at a squirrel high in a tree, enthusiastically marking their territory, and lapping water from a toilet. Few children have not wished for a dog's life, and Bauer's ballad delivers that wish fulfilled, with all its disadvantages exposed for comic effect. (Picture book. 5-9) Read full book review >