POLICEMAN LOU AND POLICEWOMAN SUE

Between shared breakfast and dinner, a pair of uniformed police officers minds a small-town beat in this wooden, sexist companion to the much superior Dot the Fire Dog (2001). As Lou greets shop owners, drives the squad car, and nabs a purse-snatcher, Sue takes a stint as school-crossing guard, writes a parking ticket—“ ‘Must not be from around here,’ says Lou. ‘There would be no place for the fire truck to park.’ ‘It’s not safe,’ says Sue’ ”—comforts the briefly purseless victim, and at day’s end, cooks dinner for her partner. Their firearms and other equipment no more than indistinct, abstract shapes, the two pose with faces generally as stiff as the dialogue in static, preternaturally neat neighborhood settings. Despite good intentions, a popular topic, and a closing page of vague safety tips (“When you need help, talk to a trusted adult or a friend”), this clunker will neither engage child readers nor inform them. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: June 1, 2003

ISBN: 0-439-40888-1

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Blue Sky/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2003

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MY TEACHER FOR PRESIDENT

Come November, lots of people would cast their vote for Oliver’s teacher—just the kind of secure, commanding, compassionate presence it would be good to see in the White House. Arranged by Brunkus in warmly agreeable two-page spreads—the left side depicting the teacher tending to her responsibilities at school, the right side showing her attending to the same qualities as chief executive—Oliver tells us of her fondness for white houses, that she likes to be followed about, likes to travel, knows how to keep the attention of her charges, doesn’t mind any number of meetings, and signs important documents. Then Winters ups the ante: this gray-haired, bespeckled wise soul also knows first-hand how to react to emergencies, handle health-care issues, is interested in finding people jobs, keeping the Earth clean, and knows—here’s the kicker—how to listen. It all starts so early, these fundamentals of a sensitive existence, and Winters makes the parallels simple to digest. Here’s a third-party candidate to get behind. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2004

ISBN: 0-525-47186-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Dutton

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2004

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THE GIRL WHO LOVED WILD HORSES

            There are many parallel legends – the seal women, for example, with their strange sad longings – but none is more direct than this American Indian story of a girl who is carried away in a horses’ stampede…to ride thenceforth by the side of a beautiful stallion who leads the wild horses.  The girl had always loved horses, and seemed to understand them “in a special way”; a year after her disappearance her people find her riding beside the stallion, calf in tow, and take her home despite his strong resistance.  But she is unhappy and returns to the stallion; after that, a beautiful mare is seen riding always beside him.  Goble tells the story soberly, allowing it to settle, to find its own level.  The illustrations are in the familiar striking Goble style, but softened out here and there with masses of flowers and foliage – suitable perhaps for the switch in subject matter from war to love, but we miss the spanking clean design of Custer’s Last Battle and The Fetterman Fight.          6-7

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 1978

ISBN: 0689845049

Page Count: -

Publisher: Bradbury

Review Posted Online: April 26, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1978

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