IVAN THE TERRIER by Peter Catalanotto

IVAN THE TERRIER

Age Range: 2 - 5
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KIRKUS REVIEW

In a sort of Three Pigs lite, a Jack Russell terrier makes mincemeat out of four familiar folk tales as its ever-more-exasperated owner tries to tell them. So, a bucolic countryside scene reveals three goats grazing as the narration reads, “Once upon a time there were three Billy goats named Gruff.” With a turn of the page, a little dynamo of a dog emerges, barking furiously at the surprised goats while the narrator desperately tries to get him to mind: “Ivan! You naughty dog! You’re ruining the story!” Ivan does the same to “The Three Bears,” “The Three Little Pigs” and “The Gingerbread Boy,” before the narrator gives up and focuses all attention on him—only to be ignored in favor of a nap. Catalanotto uses both keen understanding of terrier behavior and design to deliver the humor, full-bleed spreads giving way to more and more white space as Ivan intrudes and drives both characters and stories away from the page. It’s something of a one-note joke, however successful, and serves more as a primer for the Wiesner masterpiece than a companion—but there’s nothing wrong with that. (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: Sept. 18th, 2007
ISBN: 978-1-4169-1247-7
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Richard Jackson/Atheneum
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 2007




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