Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Dodsworth in New York

Dodsworth in New York

Spring 2008 Fiction
Ages: 7 - 10 yrs.
Author: Tim Egan
Illustrator: Tim Egan
ISBN: 9780618777082
Hardcover Price: $15.00
Review:
In this off-beat adventure, Hodges Café reappears, this time as the launch pad for Dodsworth, the erstwhile antique-cum-junkshop dealer last seen in The Pink Refrigerator as he begins his first great adventure. "Where to?" asks Hodges when Dodsworth arrives for one last breakfast before heading out. "New York. Paris. Rome. You name it." Dodsworth replies. Reinvented as a beginning reader (the first installment was a picture book), the story-which begins with pancakes and ends with Paris-unfolds in four easy chapters...easy that is for everyone except Dodsworth who spends the entire book chasing Hodges' crazy duck (who stowed away in his luggage) around New York City. As usual, Egan's deadpan humor is matched by his art: a muted palette, an all-animal cast of flat cartoon characters, and an array of benign-almost sleepy-faces which show little reaction to the strange events taking place before their half-closed eyes. Despite one small lapse-Dodsworth appears to mysteriously lose his suitcase before checking into his hotel in Chapter 3 only to have it reappear in Chapter 4 at the train station-young readers will take delight in spotting the wayward duck at the Museum of Modern Art (a sculpture), at a plein air magic show (in place of the rabbit in the hat), and hiding in plain sight amidst a flock of avian friends in Washington Square.
Kristi Elle Jemtegaard   ©2008 Parents' Choice
Kristi Elle Jemtegaard is the Coordinator of Youth Services for the Arlington Public Library system. She has taught courses on children’s and young adult literature at the Catholic University of America and the University of Virginia. She has served on both the Newbery and Caldecott Award Committees of the American Library Association and has chaired the Notable Children’s Recordings Committee and the May Hill Arbuthnot Award Committee. She is a member and past president of the Children’s Book Guild of Washington DC and has chaired the Washington Post–Book Guild Nonfiction Award Committee. She is a founding member of Capitol Choices, an organization of professionals in the field of children’s literature in the greater Washington DC area. She regularly reviews children’s literature and audio productions for a variety of national publications.


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