Little Dog and the Christmas Wish
Black Dog Books, 2014
32pp., hbk., RRP $A24.99
Little Dog and Jonathan are the best of friends. But trouble strikes when a massive thunderstorm hits while Jonathan and his mother go shopping on Christmas Eve leaving Little Dog at home, alone. Even though he does not like thunder and lightning, Little Dog need to protect Jonathan so he squeezes under the gate to find him.
At first the smells and sights are familiar but it is not long before Little Dog is in new territory. But even so and even though the thunderstorm is still raging, he continues on his search. When he sees the open door of the baker’s cart he jumps in and the old Clydesdale clip clops along, taking Little Dog into town where everything, everywhere and everyone is strange. As hard as he looks he cannot find Jonathan. And still the rain and thunder and lightning continue. Even when he finds shelter and the busker invites him to go home with him, Little Dog knows he needs to find Jonathan. And so his search continues…
This is a most poignant story about that special bond between a dog and its human friend that will resonate with every child and adult who has one. There is something about the loyalty and love that is so strong. Set in Melbourne in the 1950s, it is nostalgic, even sentimental, as the soft palette, watercolour illustrations take the reader back into a gentler, slower time where Christmas is not so frenetic. Illustrator Robin Cowcher was shortlisted for the CBCA Crichton Award for New Illustrators in 2015.
In 2014 this book was the focus of the Christmas window display in Myer, Melbourne, the 60th anniversary of this much loved, Melbourne tradition, a rare honour afforded to only the best of books! (And the author’s new book, One Christmas Eve, is the focus of the 2016 windows.)
Something a little different, a little more like the Christmas stories of yesteryear for the Christmas Countdown.