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Author: DiPucchio, Kelly
A proper bulldog raised in a poodle family and a tough poodle raised in a bulldog family meet one day in the park.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 2.80
Points: .5 Quiz: 167610
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: K-2
Reading Level: 1.70
Points: 1.0 Quiz: 62998
Common Core Standards
Grade K → Reading → RL Literature → K.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade K → Reading → RL Literature → K.RL Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
Grade 1 → Reading → RL Reading Literature → 1.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade 1 → Reading → RL Reading Literature → 1.RL Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
Kirkus Reviews (+) (05/01/14)
School Library Journal (05/01/14)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (09/14)
The Hornbook (+) (00/05/14)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 05/01/2014 PreS-Gr 2—Mrs. Poodle has new puppies, Fi-Fi, Foo-Foo, Ooh-La-La, and Gaston, but one of them is not like the others. Next to his petite siblings, Gaston is stocky, ungainly, and goofy looking. One day, they encounter a rough-and-tumble bulldog family, and it's immediately clear that there has been a mix-up. Gaston's short legs and broad ears look just like those of the bulldogs', while the bulldog family includes a tiny poodle named Antoinette. What starts out as a typical "Ugly Duckling" plot becomes a tender exploration of nurture vs. nature. The pups go home with their "real" families, but everyone questions the decision. The mothers are shown gazing forlornly at family portraits, and poor Gaston has no interest in anything "brutish or brawny or brown," preferring the "proper or precious or pink" home that Antoinette scorns. The next day they joyfully switch back: "There. That looked right. And it felt right too." But the story doesn't end there. Both families continue to meet and teach each other about being tough and tender, and when Gaston and Antoinette eventually fall in love and have puppies of their own, they teach them to be whatever they want to be. Robinson's expressive acrylic paintings are bright and bold, yet simple, making masterly use of negative space and contrast. This heartwarming story of family will be a welcome addition to homes and libraries of all types.—Anna Haase Krueger, Ramsey County Library, MN - Copyright 2014 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 06/01/2014 Nature or nurture? Gaston, born into a family of fancy French poodles, looks and acts different. His coiffure, bark, and demeanor need work. His ears stick up, not down; he ruffs instead of yaps, slobbers instead of sips. Mrs. Poodle and her daughters Fi-Fi, Foo-Foo, and Ooh-La-La love him just the same. Strolling in the park, the family meets a mostly bulldog clan: Rocky, Ricky, Bruno—and Antoinette. She has learned their ways, as she races, yaps, and abhors pink. The mothers decide to switch the two pooches, since each, obviously, belongs with the other clan, but in the end, no one is happy. Puppies are reexchanged, and all works out for the best, especially when Gaston and Antoinette marry. Though readers will probably want to know how the mistake happened (and a mix-up would have been easy to show on the title page), they will mostly adore this joyous tale. The pictures, rendered in simple shapes of warm acrylic colors, are a delight, celebrating each dog’s expressive personality. Kids who might feel the odd man out in their own families will take heart from this. - Copyright 2014 Booklist.
Bulletin for the Center... - 09/01/2014 Mrs. Poodle is proud of all her pups, even Gaston, who, as the size of a teapot, doesn’t quite fit in with his teacup siblings, Fi-Fi, Foo-Foo, and Ooh-La-La. One day at the park, the Poodle family encounters Mrs. Bulldog and her brood, the robust Rocky, Ricky, Bruno-and the fluffy, teacup-sized Antoinette. “It seems there’s been a terrible mistake,” the mamas concur, and, after some evaluative circling, Gaston and Antoinette decide to swap families. Yet Gaston doesn’t take to typical bulldog romping, and Antoinette struggles in the refined atmosphere of the Poodles’ pink-saturated home. While they return to the comfort of their original families, they learn a valuable lesson about being oneself (that they then pass on to their own offspring when they grow up and get married to each other) in this charming exploration of the deceptiveness of appearances. Robinson’s gorgeous acrylic illustrations evoke Parisian life, from the simple refinement of apartments to the ornate wrought iron of park benches, in a palette reminiscent of French macarons, grounded by sophisticated greys. These winking depictions of privileged canine life (for instance, Gaston in a smart neckerchief) convey both humor and haute homeyness, as does DiPucchio’s playful prose, which immediately engages with its tone of familiarity. Useful for a lighthearted look at feelings of not quite fitting in (or even at adoption), this delightful readaloud will have audiences très enchantés, indeed. AA - Copyright 2014 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.