Walker Books, 2018
40pp., hbk., RRP $A24.99
Rosie loves living with George and going for walks with him, but she is lonely. The dog in the bottom of her empty silver food bowl does not talk back to her, and when George sees historical figures in the clouds, Rosie just sees squirrels to chase – never another dog. But when George does point out a dog-cloud and Rosie barks at it, he realises she wants company and takes her to the dog park.
But there are too many dogs who are loud and boisterous for Rosie until…
This charming story in graphic novel format by the author of such outstanding books like Because of Winn-Dixie is perfect for any little person who loves dogs, or who is a little like Rosie and not sure how to go about making friends. And it’s not just Rosie who learns to navigate the obstacles, but George himself finds some new people for his life too. Bliss manages to give each dog its own personality with compassion and humour so that even Maurice is portrayed as awkward rather than a bully.
As a new school year looms on the horizon and many children will be facing new adventures in new schools, and perhaps with some trepidation, they may well relate to this little terrier as she enters a new environment which is overwhelming but manages to find her place within it. Because of its format with some quite small panels, this is one to be shared one-on-one with a child so Rosie’s anxiety and how she dealt with it can be talked about, and perhaps give reassurance and confidence that, on the whole, the big wide world of school is a friendly place and that each child is like Maurice, Fifi and Rosie – they just want a friend if only they could learn now to make one.