Widget is a stray doghomeless, cold, wet, and hungry. He finds his way to a warm, cozy home but has to exercise all his ingenuity to convince the six female felines in residence to accept him. With a light and humorous touch, text and illustrations charm readers as Widget charms the cats by pretending to be one of them.” Starred, School Library Journal
“A fresh, unpretentious approach that speaks directly tochildren. With its short text, appealing art, and good oldfashioned story, this picture book will be a crowd pleaser in story times and a favorite of cat lovers and dog lovers alike.” Booklist
In this when-in-Rome story, a stray dog alters his canine ways to appease half-a-dozen grouchy cats. Widget, a scruffy Westie, wanders into a farmhouse where he finds "six cats, six warm beds, and six bowls of hot food." The well-fed cats glare at him. "I wish you could stay," says the grandmotherly caretaker, Mrs. Diggs. "But I'm afraid the girls just can't stand dogs." Widget utters a hopeful "Meow?" Thereafter, he adopts feline ways, until the inevitable emergency ("Mrs. Diggs... fell down. She didn't move") compels him to bark and save the day. The McFarlands, who imagined a teddy bear mimicking a bird in The Pirate's Parrot, once again depict an adaptable outsider. Widget's name aptly suggests an unspecific, versatile object. In Jim McFarland's pen-and-ink and watercolor wash illustrations, the ingratiating dog appears the same size as his adoptive sisters, with pointed ears and a scruffy, upraised tail; he even casts a cat-shaped shadow. This story line offers no surprises, but it gives a fond account of cross-species conciliation, and, at their best, the pictures of the hero attempting to adapt to his housemates' behavior hint at the sly wit of James Stevenson's artwork. Ages 3-6. (Sept.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
PreS-Widget is a stray dog-homeless, cold, wet, and hungry. He finds his way to a warm, cozy home but then has to exercise all his ingenuity to convince the six female felines in residence to accept him. With a light and humorous touch, text and illustrations charm readers as Widget charms the cats by pretending to be one of them. The funniest spreads are of Widget and "the girls" facing off all puffed up, then hissing and spitting. The pup quickly realizes that purring, playing, and even using the litter box is the ticket into this household. In the end, the cats accept him on his own terms-as a dog-since it is barking, not meowing, that saves the day after a mishap suffered by their human guardian, Mrs. Diggs. Illustrations, apparently watercolors, are detailed and realistic with cartoon touches that add to the humor, as when six pairs of cats' eyes are all turned toward Widget, whose own wide eyes are trained in turn on them. This is a preschool crowd pleaser, just right for storytime.-Dorian Chong, School of Library and Information Science, San Jose State University, CA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Widget, a small, stray, furry white dog the size of a West Highland terrier, finds the perfect home with Mrs. Diggs. Unfortunately, six cats that she calls collectively "the girls" already reside with her. Wandering through a cat door of the cozy cottage and spying six bowls of food, six comfy cat beds, and six cats, Widget makes a beeline for the food, but Mrs. Diggs blocks his path. "Why, you poor thing," says Mrs. Diggs. "I wish you could stay. But I am afraid the girls just can't stand dogs." Widget really wants to stay: " ‘Meow?' said Widget." Putting on his best cat imitation, when the girls puff up and hiss, so does he. When the girls growl, Widget purrs. Before long, the girls accept Widget as one of their own and they play, eat, and chase mice together. Shocked and dismayed when Mrs. Diggs falls and needs help, it is then that the girls discover there are times when only a dog will do. McFarland's (Pirate's Parrot, 2000) soft watercolors offer an expressive line of animal movements and facial expressions to support the quiet humor. This is a delightful read-aloud with short, pithy sentences and illustrations that place the reader right at eye-level with the animals' point of view, only glimpsing Mrs. Diggs, but rarely above the knees. The girls, having learned how, would surely give three barks for Widget. (Picture book. 2-5)