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I HAVE SEVEN DOGS by Molly Horan


by Molly Horan ; illustrated by Dana Wulfekotte

Pub Date: June 13th, 2023
ISBN: 9780593324356
Publisher: Nancy Paulsen Books

A dog lover prevented from pet ownership finds a creative solution.

“Our apartment is the perfect place for pillow forts and movie nights and family dinners,” Zoe tells us. “Unfortunately, it is not the perfect place for dogs.” But Zoe is a good problem solver, and the young narrator takes us on a walk around the neighborhood, where we meet a variety of dogs, from Wishbone, a Chihuahua whom Zoe reads to, to Marmalade, a Yorkie who has wheels in place of hind legs, to Gabby and Abby, Zoe’s piano teacher’s collies. Conversations with a neighbor at the community garden and later with big sister Meg lead Zoe to a great idea for a birthday party in the park…with all of Zoe’s pals, human and canine. The celebration is a joyous event. Horan’s straightforward, minimal text tells a cheerful story; the closest we get to anything negative occurs when Zoe admits to a pang of jealousy over a friend who has just adopted a pet dachshund. Overall, it’s a sweet and gently humorous tale, with lively, colorful illustrations that bring to life a tightknit urban community. Young children will feel empowered witnessing how Zoe finds a way to deal with a seemingly insurmountable issue. Zoe and Meg are Asian-presenting, while their mother is light-skinned; their neighborhood is diverse. (This book was reviewed digitally; this review has been updated for factual accuracy.)

An upbeat, charming reminder that any problem can be solved with the right attitude.

(Picture book. 3-6)