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A Dog Day for Susan
Cover of A Dog Day for Susan
A Dog Day for Susan
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Spencer and his family are expecting a visit from Great-Aunt Alice and her dog, Susan. All Spencer knows is that she's dignified and graceful, with long, beautiful hair — the dog, that is. Spencer and his own pup, Barney, are excited to have another dog to play with and decide to give her a chance. But it soon becomes clear that Susan is no regular dog. She eats cake off a china plate, takes scheduled naps, and needs an umbrella held over her in the rain.

Spencer and Barney decide to teach Susan how to be a real dog. With Barney as a role model, they take her to the off-leash dog park to develop skills like barking at buses, cyclists and squirrels, eating garbage, resisting grooming, and refusing to come when she's called. Susan returns from the park covered in burrs, having shed her dignity and grace enough to fully embrace her inner dog. Mixed-media illustrations support the humorous text in this story about embracing who you are.

Spencer and his family are expecting a visit from Great-Aunt Alice and her dog, Susan. All Spencer knows is that she's dignified and graceful, with long, beautiful hair — the dog, that is. Spencer and his own pup, Barney, are excited to have another dog to play with and decide to give her a chance. But it soon becomes clear that Susan is no regular dog. She eats cake off a china plate, takes scheduled naps, and needs an umbrella held over her in the rain.

Spencer and Barney decide to teach Susan how to be a real dog. With Barney as a role model, they take her to the off-leash dog park to develop skills like barking at buses, cyclists and squirrels, eating garbage, resisting grooming, and refusing to come when she's called. Susan returns from the park covered in burrs, having shed her dignity and grace enough to fully embrace her inner dog. Mixed-media illustrations support the humorous text in this story about embracing who you are.

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About the Author-
  • Maureen Fergus is an award-winning author of books for children and young adults. Her books include And What if I Won't?, The Day my Mom Came to Kindergarten, and The Gypsy King. She lives in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Reviews-
  • Kirkus

    January 1, 2016
    "It's not fair, Barney," grouses Spencer to his brown-and-white mutt. "Susan is treated better than me. It's like...it's like she's the human and I'm the dog!" When Great-Aunt Alice visits Spencer's family with her indulged Afghan hound, Susan, poor Spencer is aced out of a steak, the last piece of breakfast bacon, and a visit to the zoo, among other indignities. Boy and mutt take the royal creature to an off-leash park, where Barney teaches her how to eat garbage, roll in a mud puddle, play with other dogs, and run loose. Great-Aunt Alice is appalled at her muddy, tangled hound with garbage breath, and they leave in a huff so that both may return to their regular, disciplined lives. Will Susan revert to being a real dog after her brief time of true dogdom, or will she once again be a princess? Readers must decide, though Spencer thinks he knows. Action is strongly portrayed in Arnaldo's mixed-media drawings, which show personalities, activities, and characters--the dogs are especially well-done. (Spencer and his family are white.) The story is overextended, however, and it raises some questions. Children may wonder whether it's meant to be humorous when Spencer is deprived of food and Susan of activity. The illustrations convey the humor and fun, while the anecdotes sometimes seem selfish and mean. A shaggy dog story that's both funny and disquieting. (Picture book. 5-8)

    COPYRIGHT(2016) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    March 1, 2016

    PreS-Gr 2-Spencer and his family can't wait for Great-Aunt Alice to visit next weekend! Or can they? Not only is she coming but she's also bringing her dog, Susan. Spencer and his dog, Barney, are not sure that Susan is their kind of dog. She has long, beautiful hair and is dignified and graceful. She eats her cake on a plate, sleeps all afternoon, and must have an umbrella over her head when she goes outside in the rain. The weekend is not easy for Spencer. He misses his favorite TV show because Susan must watch her show. A trip to the zoo is not possible because Susan will not be allowed inside. She even gets to have Spencer's juicy barbecued steak! Spencer and Barney decide to take action. They know that deep down inside there is a real dog just waiting to get out. Will their plan work? And if it does work, how will Great-Aunt Alice take the changes in her pet? This is a fun book for independent reading or as a read-aloud. The lengths to which Spencer and Barney go to unleash Susan's inner dog are entertaining-from running around to rolling in mud to eating garbage. The well-drawn and appealing illustrations, done in mixed media, enhance the story and bring the expressive canines to life. VERDICT You don't have to be a dog lover to enjoy this book.-Barbara Spiri, Southborough Library, MA

    Copyright 2016 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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    Owlkids Books Inc.
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A Dog Day for Susan
Maureen Fergus
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