Following his adoption in Madame Martine (2014), Max the dog leads his owner on another chase—this time in the Louvre.
It's another Saturday—the day Madame Martine and Max venture out of their Paris apartment to explore. When Martine's friend Louis, a guard at the Louvre, meets her at the cafe and asks her to visit him, she makes excuses for never going: “It's so crowded, and they don't allow dogs.” Louis goes off to work while Martine and Max ride the Métro, getting off at the Palais Royale stop for a new adventure. When Max spots Louis near the Louvre’s employee entrance, he scampers past and into the museum, with the two in pursuit. But their chase is short-lived, and suddenly Max is in Martine's arms. Readers primed for a lesson in art history with a dash of humor will be disappointed; Louis excitedly points out exquisite masterpieces, but Martine is decidedly uninterested, solely focused on leaving before Max is spotted. Only when Louis shows her the Mona Lisa does Martine pause to admire an artwork. The tension sputters, and the story ends on an anticlimactic note. As in Brannen's first Martine and Max story, the beautiful watercolor illustrations starring the inimitable Max are expressive and carefully rendered—but altogether different is Martine's reaction to her first experience visiting a Paris landmark.
Lovely to look at but inartfully told. (Picture book. 4-7)