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Surprise Party Hardcover – April 1, 2000

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Kitsch is king in this effortful enterprise, which reflects a hefty amount of labor but does not deliver a commensurate amount of reward for young readers. As in My Town, Wegman's famous weimaraners--here, Chip, Batty, Chundo and Crooky--are cast as small-town citizens. Chip is the delivery boy, bringing everything from newspapers to pizza, and the others want to throw him a surprise birthday party, but their plan misfires. The deadpan storytelling is secondary to the no-holds-barred campiness of the props and settings. Tricked out in dumpy housedresses and flowered aprons or polka-dotted shirts and bow ties, the canines inhabit a never-never land of tackiness, their house a profusion of retro tablecloths, crewel-work pictures, '70s calendars, motel-quality art and busy-as-a-bee wallpapers. It's no surprise that the endpapers are designed to look like the fake wood of rec-room paneling from a bygone day, or that Chundo decides to make "a rustic sportsman's lamp" (the shade shows a fisherman amid a woodland stream) for Chip's birthday. The details are perfect, but their appreciation requires either a sort of jaded sensibility or a taste for nostalgia, neither of which kids are likely to share. All ages. (Apr.)

Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Gr 3 Up-Yet another installment in the Wegman weimaraner saga. This time, Batty, Chundo, and Crooky plan a surprise birthday party for Chip, a pizza-delivery dog. The three friends invite guests, devise the menu, make presents, and decorate. Then, on the big day, a different dog appears-Chip has taken off for his birthday. Dialogue balloons pop up throughout the story, adding humor and extra insight into the characters. However, the dialogue that makes up the main text is flat and predictable. The photographic images are of Wegman's standard dressed-up dogs, this time in a house decorated in a 1950s/'60s style filled with the appropriate kitsch (though a wall calendar indicates the year 1976). Older children may find the dogs' deadpan facial expressions, clothes, and activities entertaining. Purchase for libraries with a dedicated Wegman following.-Linda M. Kenton, San Rafael Public Library, CA

Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 1 and up
  • Grade Level: Preschool and up
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion; 1st edition (April 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786805854
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786805853
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 0.4 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #748,137 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 5, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I HAVE THROUGHLY ENJOYED ALL OF THE CHILDREN"S BOOKS OF WILLIAM WEGMAN. EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE WRITTEN FOR CHILDREN, I PROBABLY ENJOY LOOKING AT THEM TIME AND TIME AGAIN AS MUCH AS ANY CHILD. I HAVE OWNED WEIMARANERS FOR 35 YEARS, SO I KNOW WHAT A UNIQUE BREED THEY CAN BE. IN THE SURPRISE PARTY, WEGMAN AGAIN HAS AN INTERESTING STORY FOR CHILDREN; ALONG WITH HIS WIMSICAL PICTURES OF HIS WEIMARANER FRIENDS. I WOULD RECOMEND THIS FOR YOUNG AND OLD ALIKE.
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By p31Mom on March 15, 2009
Format: Hardcover
These books are rated for 4-8 years old. They show dogs in all different human costumes and activities. Story lines are simple enough for a child but clever enough for adults. This particular book has decor themed from the 70s and fun to see. Our child found them a little bit confusing that the dogs were "pretending" but then he is not yet 4. But even he found the visual stimulating pictures interesting. He could look at them for a long time as the picturs are rich details.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Good fun for 5 year olds! We're collecting Wegman books, so thankfully there's quite a few out there. Christmas is a good one, too.
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