Booklist Reviews : Booklist Reviews 2006 January #1 K-Gr. 2. Fergus is a West Highland terrier, sort of an antihero to Rosemary Well's doggie, McDuff. He goes wild when he sees a cat, won't come when he's called, eats the daisies, and puddles in the wrong places. Of course, he's not entirely to blame; his unseen master is the sort who tells him not to beg, then slips him a tidbit, and puts whipped cream in his food bowl after the original offering gets only a disdainful sniff. This book is all about the impressive, oversize visuals--pictures that show the adorable doggie in full canine-caper mode: leaping, chasing, digging, not rolling over on command. And the expressions on Fergus' face perfectly mirror those of many pets who have the innocent look down pat: "Who me?" However, the best audience for this will be children old enough (or experienced enough with dogs) to catch the humor. Fergus has made cameo appearances in other Shannon books. Come to think of it, maybe he's not so much a counterpoint to McDuff as he is Shannon's David in fur. ((Reviewed January 1 & 15, 2006)) Copyright 2006 Booklist Reviews.
Publishers Weekly Reviews : PW Reviews 2006 January #1
Judging from his picture-book repertoire,Shannon (No, David! ) knows well how exuberant types tend to get into trouble. His buoyant new work keeps the streak going, this time depicting the spunky, yet ever-so-natural behavior of a family dog (the Shannon family in fact--Fergus the West Highland terrier has appeared somewhere in all of Shannon's books). The morning routine is off to a good start when Fergus's partially seen owner lets him out, but things quickly take a turn: "Ready... set... Cat! " A feline sighting sends Fergus into a frenzy and, once outside, the pepped-up pooch will not come back in. (A hand-lettered page of the owner's verbal entreaties is a hoot.) Digging up a potted plant, getting a bath, taking a fur-fluffing spin in the car and begging for scraps at the table round out Fergus's fun-filled day (and reveal the unseen owner as a true pushover). Through it all, he's commended with "Good boy, Fergus!" Shannon's mixed-media illustrations, in the style of his David books, crackle with personality. Fergus's expressions and poses will be both funny and familiar to dog lovers, and the predominantly close-up perspective offers an immediacy that makes readers feel included in every second of the tail-wagging action. Paws down, Fergus is one memorable pooch. Ages 3-6. (Mar.)
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School Library Journal Reviews : SLJ Reviews 2006 March
PreS-Gr 2 -Reading this story is like having a romp with the funniest dog in town. As the book opens, two lines of text ("Good morning, Fergus!/Want to go out?") frame the irrepressible face of a furry white terrier, black button eyes glistening with excitement. Subsequent pages feature the pup's adventures chasing cats and motorbikes, scratching and being scratched, playing in the dirt, begging for meatballs, and riding in the car. No matter what the animal does, his master's refrain isÃ¢â¬Â¦you guessed it. Readers see everything from a terrier-sized perspective, and they rarely see anyone but Fergus. When he is trampling his owner to request a walk, they catch just a glimpse of a human face. The motorcyclist's face is so covered with gear as to be generic. The more intimate portraits here are of things of interest to Fergus-spaghetti and meatballs, for example, or the whipped cream that he likes on his kibble. Shannon's artwork is like an overstuffed sofa: colorful, homey, and bouncy. A riotous book to unleash on all readers-even those who own cats.-Susan Weitz, formerly at Spencer-Van Etten School District, Spencer, NY
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