ISBN 0316114537 - Arthur, as a TV character, is a long ago favorite. No one here watches anymore, leaving me no excuse to plunk down and watch along. For that reason alone, I like Arthur books. Add in the fact that kids like Arthur and that entices them to read... and I like Arthur a lot more!
Arthur has gotten a new puppy. He's named him Pal and is determined to train him to be a good, obedient dog. D.W. spends most of the book scoffing at the idea and gently mocking her brother's hopes. Because Pal is afraid of being alone in the garage, he is allowed to spend a couple nights in the house, as long as Arthur remembers to close the pet gate. Of course, Arthur forgets and Pal proves to be a real terror, ripping apart the kitchen and living room and peeing everywhere. Not only that, he runs whenever he sees his leash! Arthur's friends tell him stories of other dogs who have been sent away because they were too much trouble, sending Arthur into a flurry of training activity. Will he get Pal trained before it's too late? Or will he come home from school one day to find that his pal is gone?
Author and illustrator Marc Brown is fantastic, as usual, but this is one case that I'm not totally pleased. Portions of the story are told only in the illustrations, which I find a negative because I think the images should complement the text, not replace it. The story, however, is one that all little pet-desiring children ought to enjoy and their parents will like taking advantage of the chance to explain how much work a puppy can be before the family considers getting one. The relationship between D.W. and Arthur is perfection: they don't get along 100% of the time, but they're never really mean to one another.
Check out more Arthur Adventures, among them, Arthur's Birthday, Arthur's April Fool (Arthur Adventure Series) and Arthur's Eyes: An Arthur Adventure (Arthur Adventure Series).