He's determined to train his new puppy. Sit. Stay. Fetch.
What could go wrong? It's just that Edgar's dog happens to be an octopus.
A particularly brilliant octopus at that.
Edgar's life is about to change forever.
Just from looking at the front cover where an octopus is among a litter of puppies and being told the title was Octopuppy my five year old was eager to read it. Her younger sister rushed over to listen too. They both thought it was very funny to see an octopus wearing a dog collar. At $29 for a hardcover picture book it is more than I would normally spend but I'm sure a paperback version would be much more affordable.
In this story Edgar really wants a puppy but gets Jarvis the octopus instead. Edgar tries to get his new pet to behave like and puppy and is disappointed when he doesn't. When Jarvis runs away Edgar realises he misses his friend and wants him back.
The illustrations were fantastic and my girls talked about how the characters were feeling based on their body language. They also really enjoyed the toilet references. They laughed when Jarvis flushed himself down the toilet but their favourite page was showing all the animals that lived in the sewerage pipe.
What I most liked about this book was the message throughout of accepting people (or animals) for who they are and don't try to make them into something they are not. This is a very important thing for us all (young and old) to remember and it The Octopuppy makes it in such an entertaining way.
My girls really loved this book and they often pick up the book and talk about the illustrations. The text is simple enough, only one or two sentences a page that they can recall most of it. Another favorite book in our house.
Martin McKenna is a genius. This book is quite a simple concept. A boy wants a pet dog. Somehow he is given a pet Octopus instead. So he does everything he can to get the Octopus to be an acceptable dog. But the Octopuppy, isn't a puppy and so eventually something has to change for either Edgar or Jarvis.
Octopuppy may seem expensive at $29 for a picture book. However, it is a hardcover book. The illustrations in this book are amazing. I will qualify that by saying that usually my husband shows no interest in kid's books. He spent 30 minutes with my daughter looking through this one. He was amazed by the detail of the inside cover drawings and the pop culture references.
I loved the illustrations. They are so detailed, fluid with great colour. Muted when appropriate for the storyline, and bright and zany where the story calls for it as well. There are wordless pages as well, which really convey so much emotion.
The story is simple. There are pages with not a lot of words on them. But the moral is there and it's a fantastic way to show kids that you should accept people as they are. That it's what's inside that counts. After all, you never know who someone is, until you really stop and see them. We loved this one, and would recommend to anyone with kids of any age. It's a good read, and a quick read for those rushed bedtimes.
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W. Heath Robinson (1872 - 1944)