Reviews of children's and young adult books old and new

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Dogs at Work

Jack's House by Karen Magnuson Beil, illustrated by Mike Wohnoutka

This is the real story of the house that Jack built. A twist on the classic poem "This is the House that Jack Built" by Mother Goose we read how the house was built and get to see who actually did the work. With rhyme and repetitive verses we learn that Max, Jack's very resourceful dog, actually built the house.

This book is very cute. I am a dog lover, so anything with cute cartoon dogs has mostly won me over. The fact that all the construction work is done by dogs is just too adorable to not like. Aside from being cute the illustrations are very well done and convey a lot of the story in their detail. The book, like the poem, is very repetitive and it continues to build on itself until the end. The repetition is great for new readers and will help them as they start to read on their own. The rhyming pattern is also good for new readers as it will help them to anticipate words and help them sound out words they do not know. The story itself takes the reader through the various construction phases of building the house. I think that kids will like the ending where Jack gets taken away and Max lives in the house, Jack's expression is great. Overall this is a very good book for children who are starting to read or for younger children who enjoy dogs, construction, or rhyme.

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