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Reviewed by:
  • The Pigeon Wants a Puppy!
  • Karen Coats
Willems, Mo; The Pigeon Wants a Puppy!; written and illus. by Mo Willems;. Hyperion, 2008; [36p] ISBN 978-1-4231-0960-0 $14.99 Reviewed from galleys R 3-6 yrs

Up until now, the plight of the pigeon has been the strain and disappointment of a dream deferred: he didn't get to drive the bus, he didn't get to eat his whole hot dog, he didn't get to stay up late. Alas, though, our pigeon is a romantic who won't stop wishing, and now he's wishing for a puppy. Broad hints that indicate he has no idea what to do with a puppy ("I promise I'll water it once a month") will start the giggles, but this time the real humor is reserved for the pigeon's getting what he wants instead of not getting it and realizing too late that it wasn't what he thought it would be like at all. To the range of emotions this one-eyed pigeon has been so articulate in conveying—he's been coy, he's been mad, he's been disappointed—Willems adds here wistful romantic fascination, complete with a kicked-up foot, clasped wings, and droopy eyelids, and abject fear, which nearly chases our bird off the page. The puppy seems benign enough with his friendly smile and waggy pink tongue, but his size relative to the pigeon gets the message across, and the pigeon's transfer of dreamy affection to a wish for a walrus puts us back on more familiar ground—if you're gonna dream, dream big enough that you are not bothered by the possibility that the dream might come true. This is another hit for our favorite blue daydream believer.



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p. 405
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