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Great Illustrated Books

Scooter in the Outside

By Anne Bowen, illustrated by Abby Carter

Holiday House, 2012
Pages : 32
Suggested Ages: 5-9
ISBN: 9780823423262

THE OUTSIDE! It makes Scooter so happy he wags his tail: THWAPPA-THWAPPA-THUMP!

Scooter is a plump, sunny yellow dog. He lives in the suburbs with Lucy and the highlight of his day is their walk. But when he and Lucy get to THE CORNER, Lucy always tugs his leash, making Scooter turn around for home . . . but Scooter wants to explore beyond the corner. One morning, Lucy forgets to close the door as she leaves for school, so Scooter decides to make his own foray into THE OUTSIDE. After a few tentative steps, Scooter races until he reaches THE CORNER. Should he cross the street? He does! To THE OTHER SIDE! WOOFA-WOOFA-WOOFA!

The playful treatment of the text, with the emphasized words appearing in upper-case, combined with plenty of onomatopoeia, make this a tale that children will be excited to read again and again. Loose, colorful pencil and watercolor illustrations capture exuberant Scooter in his quivering, wiggling, bounding joy . . . until a fire truck roars past, followed by a wide-mouthed garbage truck. Poor Scooter is scared, and the accompanying expressive picture shows him cowering behind a tree. Youngsters who, like Scooter, have been intimidated upon stepping outside their comfort zone for the first time, will empathize. Luckily, Lucy spots Scooter on her way home from school. She wraps her arms around him while he tells her all about the adventures: WOOF-WOOF-ARF-WOOF-WOOF-ARF-WOOF-AAAA-ROOOO! Next time, Lucy promises, they will cross to THE OTHER SIDE together.

This is a book that will quickly become a dog-eared favorite. WOOF!

Reviewed by : JMcD

Themes : BEHAVIOR. BEST FRIENDS. DOGS. CURIOSITY. EASY READERS. PETS.

If you love this book, then try:

Teague, Mark. Detective LaRue: Letters from the Investigation (Ike LaRue series). Scholastic Press, 2004.


Ashman, Linda and Christine Davenier. Samantha on a Roll. FSG, 2011.


Dicamillo, Kate. Mercy Watson Goes for a Ride. Candlewick, 2006.

Critics have said

The watercolor illustrations show an expressive, lovable canine and a friendly neighborhood with an assortment of people engaged in typical activities. Altogether, this is a winning package.
School Library Journal
Scooter will win over any fans of big, friendly dogs, especially when his woofs, arfs and barks are rendered by a suitably enthusiastic reader.
Kirkus Reviews