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story.lead_photo.caption Bad Dog by Mike Boldt (Random House Children's Books, Nov. 5) ages 3-7, 40 pages, $17.99 hardcover, $10.99 Kindle. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/CELIA STOREY)

TITLE: Bad Dog

BY: Mike Boldt (Random House Children's Books, Nov. 5) ages 3-7, 40 pages, $17.99 hardcover, $10.99 Kindle

STORY: A terrifyingly confident clueless girl is so determined to get a dog for her birthday that when she unboxes black-and-white Rocky, a cat, she concludes her new dog is just a bad dog.

Rocky does not come when called. She rolls over and chews the leash instead of going for a walk. She really does not like meeting other dogs and won't come down out of that tree. She will not sit, stay, fetch or roll over.

On the other hand, she likes the postman. She likes to sleep. She snuggles.

Boldt is a prolific illustrator and author whose many children's picture books include I Don't Want to Be a Frog, about a frog alarmed by the news that frogs hibernate, and A Tiger Tale (Or What Happened to Anya on Her First Day of School), in which a girl grows a tail overnight before her first day of school.

Bad Dog's insistent, gap-toothed poppet has a face that belongs in an animated movie. Rocky reacts to being manhandled with hilarious disbelief. Girl and cat are excitingly vivid forms against white backgrounds in Boldt's expert digital paintings.

Read to Me is a weekly review of short books.

Style on 11/04/2019

Print Headline: READ TO ME

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