From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 2—A curious dog asks his young owner a series of typical toddler questions, which are followed by one-line, adult-sounding answers. "Why can't I drive the car?
" "Because you are too small to drive." "Why can't we play ALL the time?
" "Because there are other things we have to do." "Why do I have to be good when we have company?
" "Because we want them to see how well-behaved you are." The illustrations are amusing and expressive, and young children will relate to Murphy's many questions. However, the story lacks consistency, and the child's bland answers lack imagination. Some questions, answers, and corresponding illustrations seem to fit the characters, while others don't. Even the title may be confusing for young readers, as Murphy eats from a dish and not straight from the floor.—Amanda Moss, Maywood Elementary School, Monona, WI
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Kids can relate to questions like "Why can't I?" and answers like "Because." In this offbeat, canine-centric take, Murphy, a floppy-eared beagle, wonders about many things, for example, "Why can't I dig in the garden?" To each query, his young girl owner offers matter-of-fact responses, e.g., "Because we want the flowers to grow." Finally, after responding to questions such as why playtime can't be all the time, and why baths are necessary, she sums it all up: "Because . . . you are a DOG, Murphy!" Straightforward prose is lightened by witty, pastel-hued, cartoon-line art. The funny scenes heighten the humor. Murphy is not only digging--he's driving an earthmover. Dog lovers will appreciate cute, expressive, ever-curious Murphy; his questions; and his wishes; and they will certainly sometimes sympathize with his longings and limitations. Shelle RosenfeldCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved