Nobody’s Duck by Mary Sullivan. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2017. 9780544792500.
An irritated alligator sees a duck painting his toenails and reading the paper on the alligator’s lawn. When he asks whose duck he is, he says he’s nobody’s duck. So the alligator takes him all over town to find out who the duck belongs to, first to the library, then to the movie theater, and on and on. They bond.
It’s more than kinda great, and it’s all in comics format. While it has an after school special ending (which I usually don’t go for), it’s not very message-y, and it’s so genuinely, relentlessly upbeat that it works and I think everyone will love it.
Woof & Quack in Winter (Green Light Readers Level 1) by Jamie A. Swenson & Ryan Sias. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2017. 9780544959026.
Quack tells Woof he’s not flying south for the winter. Woof is worried his friend will be cold. They have some fun together in the snow and then go south together, where they also have lots of fun at the beach.
This is a simple easy reader in comics format. And it’s a duck, so it will get kids ready for Howard The’s inevitable comeback.
My Friend Lucky: a love story (Ready To Read Pre-Level One) by David Milgrim. Simon Spotlight, 2017. 9781481489010.
Expressive cartoon images show the love between a boy and his dog and give kids a chance to learn a little opposing vocab. “Lucky gives.” (Lucky licking the boy.) “Lucky gets.” (The boy kissing Lucky.)
(If I wrote a book like this, the boy would be licking the dog on the second page. At which point the publisher would be like, “Next!” which I guess is why I don’t get to write books like this. Though this does give me some hope that one day I might be able to draw one if I keep it simple, because Milgrim makes it look so easy (even though I know it’s not).)
This book is just plain nice, like the hug on the cover. No ducks, sorry.