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THE PROBLEM WITH THE PUDDLES by Kate Feiffer

THE PROBLEM WITH THE PUDDLES

By Kate Feiffer (Author) , Tricia Tusa (Illustrator)

Age Range: 8 - 12

Pub Date: Feb. 24th, 2009
ISBN: 978-1-4169-4961-9
Publisher: Paula Wiseman/Simon & Schuster

Two children and their fractious parents head from their vacation home to the city and accidentally leave their two dogs behind. Before all are reunited, they meet several eccentric characters. Telling this slight story, which oozes metaliterary preciosity from every pore, takes nearly 200 pages, however, since the author relies on repetition to tell it—lots and tons of repeated repetition. Aiming for endearing quirkiness but achieving mostly contrivance, Feiffer gives readers little reason to care about her characters. Style, vocabulary and action veer from preschool level to middle-grade and back. Omitted from the jacket blurb is the fact that the plot turns on an adoption, which is trivialized and played for laughs and may well catch some readers off guard. Tusa’s charming illustrations can’t rescue this ill-conceived venture. (Fiction. 8-12)