Come one, come all for this extraordinary fiction debut for both Alex T Smith and his unforgettable hero, Claude.
Alex graduated from Coventry University with a degree in Illustration and won second place in the Macmillan Prize for Children's Illustration. Alex's first picture book won the Coventry Inspiration Award, and was longlisted for the Greenaway Medal in 2009. Alex was also shortlisted for The Best Emerging Illustrator Award by Booktrust in 2008.
Watch out for this new kid on children's books block, you will be won over! - Librarymice.comI loved everything about this book. - BookbagA treat for new readers. - Peters GazetteClaude's gentle adventures and Alex T. Smith's irresistible illustrations make this a great book to share with children. - ABC MagazineComic talent not just for writing a good story but also illustrating it in a fitting but hilarious style. - Books For KeepsFunny, detailed illustrations. - Mumsensecolourful and lively illustrations which add immensely to the fun. - CarouselAnother great talent... a sparing style is the perfect medium for his humorous tale. - Junior
Although the book's duotone artwork and small format don't draw attention to themselves, British author/illustrator Smith's canine hero Claude and his sidekick, a sock named Sir Bobblysock, prove to be fountains of good cheer and sweet humor. In the first chapter, Claude and Sir Bobblysock tour the big city; in the second, they make an unexpected trip to the hospital. Primer-like narration-"First, Claude and Sir Bobblysock went for a walk.... Everybody seemed very friendly!"-is upended by the artwork, which shows dog and sock strolling down the center of a busy avenue, oblivious to the rude gestures of human cabbies and bicyclists (and to the pink brassiere that flies out of the trunk of one taxi). In the hospital, Claude distinguishes himself by taking temperatures with a banana. While Claude's unapologetic love of shopping ("Claude hurried inside and bought a beret in every color and every pattern") and Smith's twee narration ("He gasped like this: gasp!") may cause some eye-rolling, there's much to love in this resurrection of the cheerful city chronicle of the '60s, complete with pillbox hats and fox stoles. Ages 5-9. Agent: Arena Illustration. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Gr 1-3-This transitional chapter book offers a wacky plot, silly humor, and an abundance of grayscale illustrations with red accents. Claude, a small, beret-wearing dog, lives with "Mr. and Mrs. Shinyshoes.[and] his best friend, Sir Bobblysock," an animated, striped sock. One day, the pup and his pal go to the city where they gaze at skyscrapers, walk through traffic, and shop. Claude purchases several berets, which are packed in a stack of boxes. After a visit to an art museum, the pair go to a cafe, where a woman who has stolen a sculpture is caught when she runs into Claude and his boxes, making him a hero. The next morning, Sir Bobblysock does not feel well, and after Claude takes his temperature with a banana, they go to the hospital and see Dr. Achinbum. In a case of mistaken identity, Claude is recruited to treat a group of female wrestlers stricken with a mysterious illness, curing them with "a nice cup of tea and a.cookie.." And Sir Bobblysock is as good as new after a small hole in his heel gets darned. Cartoonish line drawings feature retro clothing with impeccable tailoring, stylish embellishments, and tightly cinched waists.-Laura Scott, Farmington Community Library, MI (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.