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Harry the Dirty Dog Paperback – January 24, 2006
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"Another funny bone tickling charmer by Gene Zion and Margaret Bloy Graham that will make youngsters and their parents giggle.""-- The Kirkus Reviews""Harry is sure to be loved; especially by those pre-school children to whomdirt is an ever-delightful thing.""-- The New York Times"
From the Back Cover
Harry is a white dog with black spots who loves everything . . . except baths. So one day before bath time, Harry runs away. He plays outside all day long, digging and sliding in everything from garden soil to pavement tar. By the time he returns home, Harry is so dirty he looks like a black dog with white spots. His family doesn't even recognize him!
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Gene Zion wrote the book and his first wife Margaret Bloy Graham, a Caldecott Honor winner, did the illustrations. This was a wonderful collaboration and one of many these two talented individuals turned out over the years.
It should also be noted that this book spawned several others featuring Harry the Dog and these books have been the favorites of many over the years. (See below)
"Harry was a white dog with black spots who liked everything...except baths."
Now harry is a rather bright dog, as most dogs are, and one day, when he was getting a bit dirty, and realizes that his owners are preparing the dreaded bath! Oh no! Harry will do just about anything to get out of a bath so he steals the scrub brush, buries it in the backyard and takes off.
All day, Harry has an adventure followed by more adventures; dog tag with other dogs, playing in the street and at the railroad yard, and eventually even takes a slide down a coal chute. The key here is that as the day progresses Harry get dirtier and dirtier! As a matter of fact, rather than being a white dog with black spots, he is now a rather black dog with white spots...sort of. Harry is filthy.
Upon his return home he finds that his little escapade has changed his appearance so much that his own beloved family does not even recognize him. What to do, what to do? He performs all of his very clever flip-flop tricks to no avail. Finally, desperate at this point, Harry digs up his brush and begs for a bath.
All is well.
Kids get a kick out of this book as most of them can identify with Harry as to the odious bath. I suppose there is no great moral lesson to be learned in reading this book other than it is sometimes an advantage to be clean, but it is most certainly a fun read. I love the illustrations in this work also. This is one that has turned into a classic in children's literature and in my opinion, rightfully so.
As an interesting aside, a couple of years ago I had a kid ask me what a "coal chute" was. Actually, the little guy did not even know what coal was. Times have changed.
Some of the other books in this now famous series are:
Harry by the Sea
Harry by the Sea
No Roses for Harry!
Harry and the Lady Next Door (I Can Read Book 1)
"Harry the Dirty Dog" first appeared in 1956 and initiated a series of "Harry" stories, which included "No Roses for Harry!" "Harry by the Sea" and "Harry and the Lady Next Door." Author Gene Zion also wrote many other children's books with his wife and illustrator Margaret Bloy Graham. The two divorced in 1968 and their collaboration ended with their marriage. Zion died in 1975. Graham died in 2015. Given the book's time frame the illustrations include some now less familiar scenes, such as a coal-driven train belching a cloud of soot, wooden barrels of tar, a coal delivery truck with soot-covered driver and a chimney sweep. The book's cover shows Harry and his grimy alter-ego locked in a bemused stare-down. This funny, and now somewhat quaint, story also found its way onto film and the stage. It remains a foundational text for many childhoods to the present day. It also tells kids not to panic after a making a mistake - you can even hide the scrub brush again, everything will be OK.
The story is a lot of fun because it is all about Harry doesn't like taking baths. He runs away, going all over town and gets so dirty that his family can't recognize him. When he decides to finally go back home, the family is looking for Harry and he can't make them recognize him. He finally grabs a bath brush and gets a bath and the family discovers who he is!
This is a fun one that we read as a bedtime story. It is also fun to read before bath time because you can draw connections about cleaning little ones to the story.
Most recent customer reviews
I assumed this was the board book, but got a softcover book instead.
Amazon hit it out of the park.Read more