|Susan McElroy Montanari. Anne Wilsdorf, illus|
|Pages/Publication Date:||34 / 2016|
|Publisher:||Schwartz & Wade|
Lula Mae wants a puppy, but times are hard and all she has to work with is a bunch of chickens. Choosing the feistiest spotted chicken in the flock, Lula Mae names her Pookie, and clips a red bow onto her head to make her a "show dog." When the other chickens edge away from Pookie, Lula Mae proclaims her a shepherd dog, and when Pookie warns her about Cousin Tater's mean trick, that makes her a guard dog too. "Call it anything you like, but it's not coming in my house," insists Mama. But when Baby Berry goes missing, Pookie proves she's a valuable member of the family. Anne Wilsdorf's ink and watercolor cartoons capture the gleeful comedy in this tale of making do, for readers 4 to 7.
"Wilsdorf's ... illustrations extend the humor of Montanari's text through the characters' comical expressions and some well-placed speech bubbles. Though picture books set in the country featuring traditional nuclear families are in no short supply, it's the irrepressible optimism of Lula Mae, Mama's droll responses, and Papa's befuddled exasperation ('Lula Mae, what are you doing to that chicken!') that set this story apart and make for an ideal read-aloud that will have kids and adults chuckling. Careful readers will spot clues to Baby Berry's whereabouts, and keen observers will enjoy the chicken antics on the endpapers."—School Library Journal