The compulsively errant pooch’s latest touristic ramble takes him around the National Mall.
It’s a good thing the little dog is considerably less lame than the verse that chronicles his wandering: “Up sidewalks and stairs / Ran that little dog, Larry, / Then in through the doors… / …to a giant library!” Separated from his human family when he goes off after a fallen Popsicle, the dog’s search for them takes him on a long, looping course from the Lincoln Memorial to the Jefferson Memorial, with quick scoots past the White House, through several museums and the National Archives, and into the Library of Congress. Skewes strews his flat-perspective cartoon illustrations with labels and descriptive notes for a select set of sights and sites, then closes with a page of study and research questions. Several of the captions, though, are printed on low-contrast backgrounds and so are hard to read. Moreover, only parts of Larry’s route are traced on one of the two aerial views (the other is a stylized overview of the city from the Beltway that is too sketchy even to indicate its radial street plan), and that route doesn’t reflect the actual order in which he sees things.
A few standard-issue facts shoveled into a quick dog’s-eye view of the Smithsonian and environs do not an effective tour make. (Informational picture book. 6-9)