BALL by Mary Sullivan


by ; illustrated by
Age Range: 4 - 8
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The single word “ball” comprises the text of this visual chronicle of a day in the life of a dog and his ball.

An unnamed, roly-poly pooch lies curled on a little girl’s bed with a ball in his mouth. As the girl wakes up, she yells, “BALL,” and enthusiastically tosses it. To the dog’s utter joy, the girl continues tossing the ball while she dresses, but, alas, she leaves him alone with his ball when she heads off to school. Failing to entice the meditating mother, the puzzled baby and the freaked-out cat to play ball, the dog finally takes a nap on the girl’s bed, dreaming wild dreams about his ball until the girl returns from school—just in time to play ball all over again. As the day progresses, the word “ball” reappears in bubbles above the dog’s head with variations in punctuation, size and typeface, reflecting his mood and emphasizing his obsession with the round toy. Subdued illustrations, executed in pencil and digitally colored in pale hues, carry this story, allowing the eye to zero in on that all-important bright red ball and the endearingly droll dog, whose comic facial expressions and exaggerated body language convey bewilderment, determination, frustration, disappointment, boredom, anticipation, fear and euphoria as he spends a day with his ball.

Deceptively simple little winner for dog lovers. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: April 2nd, 2013
ISBN: 978-0-547-75936-4
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 2013


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