A playful pup, 10 mischievous mice, and some fashionable footwear unite in this seemingly simple counting book.
Hart pays homage to One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish with clever rhyming text that channels the classic on its opening spreads. But in lieu of fish are shoes as seen from a dog’s-eye view as footwear of varying styles, shades, and purpose step past the frolicking pup on its walk. Home again, canine curiosity is piqued as mice scramble and scurry, one by one, to occupy the various shoes. Onomatopoeia offers clues as to the mice’s whereabouts, and readers will delight in the floppy-eared dog’s search for them. With one lick it scatters the plump white rodents before heading out on another walk. While the nonlinear text begs to be read aloud, it’s Underwood’s skillful compositions and expressive characters that propel the sequencing of events, bringing the tale full circle. Done in pencil and marker with paper and digital collage, the graphically simplified shapes showcase the artist’s ability to execute form and design. Reminiscent of M. Sasek, Mary Blair, and other artists influenced by post–World War II optimism, Underwood’s nostalgic interpretation of modern living channels a visual style associated with feelings of opportunity and prosperity, appealing to readers of all ages.
A must-read-aloud text with memorable characters—Underwood and Hart make a perfect pair.(Picture book. 3-6)