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Review of Found.

by Jeff Newman; illus. by Larry Day
Preschool, Primary    Simon    48 pp.
11/18    978-1-5344-1006-0    $17.99
e-book ed. 978-1-5344-1007-7    $10.99

A sense of isolation permeates the opening spreads of this wordless story as a girl gazes out at a rain-drenched city street from an apartment window. She soon spots a little lost dog, and a page-turn reveals the now-raincoat-clad girl running upstairs while clutching the pup. Readers soon discover, thanks to a flyer pinned to a bedroom bulletin board, that the girl has previously lost a different dog, whose name was Prudence. After the new dog’s successful acclimation to Prudence’s old bowl and bed, the pair hits a glitch when the new dog wants to play with Prudence’s ball and leash. Our protagonist isn’t quite ready to share those keepsakes and becomes visibly upset — a tension emphasized by Day’s choice to exclude all background imagery from the spread. A restful night’s sleep and playful morning outside (featuring an exuberantly illustrated rolling-down-a-hill scene) assuage both the child and little dog’s trepidations; however, the girl is soon confronted with a “lost” sign featuring the same little dog, and she must make the difficult decision to do the right thing. Day’s pen-and-ink, watercolor, and gouache illustrations are set against stark white backgrounds and, through varying page layouts and purposeful pops of color, convey a clear narrative, express a range of emotions, and meaningfully guide the reader’s eye.

From the January/February 2019 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

About Patrick Gall

Patrick Gall works as a librarian for children in preschool through eighth grade at the Catherine Cook School in Chicago.

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