Swollobog

Swollobog

by Alastair Taylor
     
 


Swollobog will eat anything: toast, carrots, lemons, cheese (especially cheese), snails, handles, toothpaste, and even mud. She is not particular, and she'll go to extreme lengths for even the smallest morsel. She is so ravenous that when she eats, she often forgets to chew and breathe and occasionally consumes the dish. You might think that's as greedy as a… See more details below

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Overview


Swollobog will eat anything: toast, carrots, lemons, cheese (especially cheese), snails, handles, toothpaste, and even mud. She is not particular, and she'll go to extreme lengths for even the smallest morsel. She is so ravenous that when she eats, she often forgets to chew and breathe and occasionally consumes the dish. You might think that's as greedy as a small dog can get. You'd be wrong. In fact, Swollobog's insatiable appetite eventually gets her in a terrible fix -- far from family and food.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Swollobog, a portly brown dachshund, owes her name to a child's backward "d" and a misspelling of "swallow." If the name is odd, the point is simple: "It's really all a matter of greediness." Swollobog eats anything, and her elastic body often recalls a boa constrictor's. In one portrait, she proudly stands with a circular disc spanning her midriff ("One day she ate so fast she swallowed it all in one gulpDbowl included"), and in a cartoon montage, she radically changes colors and shape-shifts after devouring a chili pepper. Swollobog's worst offense takes place at a fair, where she consumes a helium balloon. She literally floats away, just out of reach of a circus performer on stilts; her ingenious family retrieves her with the help of a kite, a needle-sharp piece of peanut brittle and psychic vibes ("She can smell the thought of cheese, you see"). Taylor, making his picture-book debut, depicts Swollobog with a cigar-shaped nose, a crafty grin and a body that will accommodate any foodstuff. He styles the narrative as a chatty monologue by Meg, a girl who loves but is embarrassed by her insatiable dog. The voluble prose often overwhelms the pictures, yet mimics a young voice effectively; within the gouache paintings, randomly jotted phrases add to the quirky wit (the remark "I can't think where I put that sack of potatoes" appears near a lumpy Swollobog). This breezy tall tale marks Taylor as a promising purveyor of hyperbole. Ages 4-8. (Mar.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-A quirky story about a greedy little pup with an uncontrollable appetite. This canine garbage disposal will amuse and surprise readers with her unbelievable consumption of anything from her food and bowl to a sack of potatoes. Her troubles really begin when her family takes her to the fair, where she ingests some helium balloons and is carried out to sea. Readers will love finding out how young Meg and her family finally get their pet back. The side commentaries by the humans and the fact that they don't always make the best decisions bring the text to life. The illustrations, done in acrylics, feature characters that are almost claylike, and show a very lumpy pup with the outline of what she has eaten forming her body. This is great primary-grade humor, resulting in a book that won't stay on the shelf for long.-Sheryl L. Shipley, North Central Local Schools, Pioneer, OH Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A wry tall tale about a dog that eats everything-and that really means everything. So named because her youthful mistress had a little trouble writing her letters correctly, Swollobog, true to her moniker, has a near-mythic capacity: "Bananas, toast, and peanut brittle are her particular favorites, besides cheese. She also likes carrots, yogurt, pizza, toenail clippings, and door handles. Oh, and blueberry muffins, snails, mud, toothpaste, lemons . . . " Newcomer Taylor's bright gouache illustrations depict a somewhat rotund, never repentant, dachshund-ish dog with a formidable proboscis who clearly relishes eating her way through life. They frequently venture into the surreal, as when a hungry Swollobog engulfs our narrator's dad's leg up to the knee, or when, in the main action of the book, she eats an enormous squiggly helium balloon, assuming its shape and floating out over the sea. A daring rescue at sea ensues, in which Swollobog's desperate family row out after her, flying a kite dangling peanut brittle intended to pop the balloon from the inside when their insatiable dog eats it. The chatty, deadpan narration relies for its effect on the delightfully sly illustrations-and on a highly developed sense of irony in its reader. For those children, especially ones who may have one of Swollobog's cousins at home, this British import will hit the spot. (Picture book. 5-8)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780618043484
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
03/26/2001
Edition description:
None
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
9.75(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.13(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

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