Friday, September 10, 2010

Dodsworth in London

To date, there are three Dodsworth early readers (not counting the picture book The Pink Refrigerator, in which Dodsworth makes his first appearance). In books one and two Dodsworth visits New York and Paris. So far, the London one is my favorite, perhaps because London is tops on my list of places to visit. A fourth reader, Dodsworth in Rome, is due out in 2011.

Written and illustrated by Tim Egan, the books feature Dodsworth, a mouse, who lives in a Richard Scarry-type universe peopled (or should that be animaled?) by critters of all kinds. Dodsworth's companion, and thorn in his side, is a duck (with lowercase d). How Dodsworth acquires and becomes responsible for his feathered friend is detailed in Dodsworth in New York. By the time they reach London, the two are an established pair.

In the book's four chapters, Dodsworth loses the duck, mistakes another duck for the duck, and is finally reunited with the right duck. They also land an invite to stay at Buckingham Palace by the Queen, (a majestic cow). As Dodsworth conducts his madcap search for duck, readers are introduced to such sights as Picadilly Circus, Tower Bridge, London Bridge, the Clock Tower and Big Ben, River Thames, Parliament, Kensington Gardens, and the Royal Academy. Whew!

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