by Marsha Wilson Chall, Illustrations by Wendy Anderson Halperin
DK Ink, September, 2000.
Picture Book, 32 pages.
When a dog's boy, Jean Claude, is sent away to school which doesn't allow dogs, what is a dog to do? If he is Bonaparte, the star of this charming tale, he heads off to the school himself, only to be turned away at the door. Undeterred, Bonaparte attempts to sneak in the school disguised as Jean Claude's mother, a janitor, and even a new student. But, alas, each time he is found out. (The health exam for new students turned up the fact that he had paws and a tail, for example.) But when Jean Claude goes missing, suddenly Bonaparte is much in demand at the school. Putting his nose to the ground, Bonaparte searches the French countryside, and finally finds his beloved Jean Claude -- who had left school to find his dog! After this incident, the school changed its motto from "No Dogs Allowed" to "Now Dogs Allowed." Naturally, this new policy changes the school ("Meals, agreed the Regents, had clearly gone to the dogs"), but the changes are all for the better. Bonaparte now spends the night at the foot of Jean Claude's bed.
Bonaparte is a fresh and entertaining story, and Bonaparte himself is a real charmer. Wendy Anderson Halperin's detailed and lively illustrations are done in lovely pastels, with elaborate and beautiful borders. This lighthearted story of the love between a boy and his dog is sure to be a story time favorite.
Bonaparte is available for purchase on Amazon.com
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This review was published in the Dec.- Jan., 2001 of The Internet Writing Journal.
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