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TWO DOGS SWIMMING by Lynn Reiser

TWO DOGS SWIMMING

By Lynn Reiser (Author) , Lynn Reiser (Illustrator)

Age Range: 4 - 6

Pub Date: May 1st, 2005
ISBN: 0-06-008647-5
Publisher: Greenwillow/HarperCollins

This simply told story focuses on learning a difficult new task and on related fears and phobias. The two characters are a gray dog named Whistle and his best pal, Spot, a white dog with one large spot on his back. They are evenly matched when they run, jump or fetch sticks, but Spot always wins when they have a swimming race in a pond. That’s because Spot keeps his back legs on the bottom and because he turns around and pretends to have finished a complete lap when he has barely left the pond’s edge. Spot eventually learns to swim when he relaxes and forgets his fear of swimming, so he no longer has to cover up his lack of skill in the water. Reiser’s bold watercolor illustrations utilize simple shapes, bright colors and a pair of cheerful ducks who follow the canine pair as they cavort through their series of competitive play situations. The issues explored here are subtle but important: The naturally varying results of competition, the fear of failure and the importance of following the rules of fair play in order to claim a meaningful victory. (Picture book. 4-6)