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THE BALL by Charise Mericle Harper


From the Bean Dog and Nugget series, volume 1

by Charise Mericle Harper ; illustrated by Charise Mericle Harper

Age Range: 5 - 7

Pub Date: May 14th, 2013
ISBN: 978-0-307-97707-6
Publisher: Knopf

Bean Dog and Nugget are ready for action!

Bean Dog, a pink bean, or perhaps a hot dog, with stick arms and plaid shorts, has a new ball. It’s shiny and perfect and special to him. He’s having the best day playing with his ball when he sees Nugget, a pink circle with stick arms, a bow and a skirt. She thinks his ball is great, but he won’t let her play with it. She sets off whistling, and he thinks better of his selfishness, tossing it and telling her to think fast. The ball bounces off her roundness and vanishes…into the spooky bushes. How can they get Bean Dog’s ball back? Throw snowballs at it? Donuts? Monkeys? Muffins? No, their shoes! Now their shoes are stuck too. This calls for some deep thinking and a plan: Superdog and Ninja Nugget attack the bushes with garden implements. They get their stuff back: Yeah! After a game and some cake, it really is the best day! Harper kicks off another graphic-novel series for the early-reader audience with a tale happily devoid of the potty humor and didacticism that mark her Wedgieman titles. The simplicity of the illustrations and the text will draw in young readers, who will identify with the enthusiasm and silliness of these two-color, stick-and-bean characters.

Amiable goofiness to the nth degree—a winner. (Graphic early reader. 5-7)