Dog on a Digger by Kate Prendergast

Dog on a Digger by Kate Prendergast
Review Copy from Candlewick Press
Story & Pictures: As a wordless picture book, story and pictures are one in Dog on a Digger. Dog and his owner live on the construction site where his owner works. Dog is a working dog, donning a safety vest just like his owner as a busy day begins. When Dog's canine friend goes missing, he uses his keen sense of hearing to find him. But, the little dog is trapped in a place that no one can seem to reach. That's when Dog and his owner have a brilliant idea and brave Dog and the digger save the day. Prendergast's tells this exciting, wordless story masterfully though her illustrations, which are done in a mostly grey palette with occasional, very well placed, blues and yellows. Dog is filled with energy and intelligence. The presence of the digger, realistically rendered, at work will excite all little listeners/readers. When Dog finds the little dog and you see where he is trapped, the suspense of the story becomes palpable, as is the joy when the rescue is successful.
Why Read? Why Buy?: Wordless picture books are uncommon, but there is something magical about reading (a good) one. However, many people find them challenging at best, boring at worst. A wordless picture book is definitely easiest read alone, by one person. However, the nature of children's books is that they are often read out loud to many listeners. In 2011 I wrote an article titled How to Read a Wordless Picture Book to share techniques I developed over the years while hosting story time at the book store where I worked, and updated after becoming an elementary school librarian. Perhaps because the story telling relies entirely on pictures, I find that wordless picture books tend to have superb, often stunning illustrations. I created the label Stories without Words where you can explore more marvelous picture books!

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