Geometric shapes, matte colors and few words tell the story of a beloved but not entirely trained pup.
The right-hand page of nearly each spread holds the title words in bold color: It is what Eli hears when he chases a squirrel, hogs the bed and makes a fuss. There is a big, bold yes at the end, of course, to assure the doggie and readers that he is loved. Toddlers are not likely to be beguiled by the message of yes-you’re-bad-sometimes-but-we-love-you-anyway—they’re probably quite familiar with David Shannon's sublime No, David! (1998)—but they will be taken happily by the pictures. There’s Eli lying on his back surrounded by the great number of food items he has taken one big bite out of, and there he is, going where he shouldn’t, in a clearly delineated if graphically abstract flower bed. And he really does hog the bright-yellow bed in the great blue room. They will no doubt also be delighted by the path of destruction Eli leaves through his house, where furniture and household objects in bright array are scattered behind him. The words “The End” appear just over Eli’s own hindquarters as he moves on to the next adventure.Adult readers might want to suggest his family be in touch with the BadDog Trainers whose card appears on the opening spread; children will simply enjoy the havoc. (Picture book. 3-6)