There's a try for some feeling here--in the relationship between a venturesome little girl, Marie; an old woman shunned as a witch; and Blackie, her forbidding big black dog-but the story has no momentum. . . until it comes to a precipitate end. Mostly we just see the old woman introduce Marie to her solitary life-style (it's almost that, as presented), tell her that she doesn't mind it, suggest that Blackie may be keeping his distance because he's afraid of Marie. Then the old woman dies, and Blackie looms in the door. ""What is Blackie thinking?"" Marie wonders. ""What sort of creature is this Blackie?"" She holds out a cube of sugar (why she's carrying it, why she proffers it, we don't know), asks ""Do you like sugar, Blackie?"". . . And at the turn of the page she's riding on his back, airborne to all appearances; and they are loving friends. The full-color watercolors are just blobby.