Basset hound Charlie learns to share with a visiting yellow Lab named Rowdy in this mildly entertaining early reader.
Charlie has previously starred in several picture books about his life on the ranch owned by author Drummond. This offering for beginning readers, the first in a series, uses Drummond’s characters and deGroat’s illustration style from the previous picture books, although the text and illustrations here are done by others (presumably the Amanda Glickman and Rick Whipple “gratefully acknowledge[d]” on the copyright page). The slight plot involves a visit from Rowdy, who is (of course) a boisterous sort whose personality doesn’t mesh well with the laconic basset hound. Rowdy takes over Charlie’s food and bed, invades his “personal space” and cozies up to Charlie’s owner. After Rowdy is banished to an outside doghouse, Charlie takes pity on him and invites him inside to share the sofa for a nap. The illustrations help convey the canine personalities through amusing expressions on the dogs’ faces, and Charlie’s little chipmunk friend is hidden on each spread for young readers to find.
Fans of Charlie’s previous picture books will like reading more about his life on the ranch, but others might concur with Rowdy as he naps on the sofa: “Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.” (Early reader. 5-8)