Sonderbooks Stand-out

Sonderbooks Book Review of


by Paul Meisel


by Paul Meisel

Review posted August 29, 2023.
I Like to Read Comics (Holiday House), 2023. 32 pages.
Review written July 3, 2023, from a library book.
Starred Review
2023 Sonderbooks Stand-out:
#9 Picture Books

Oh, this graphic novel for beginning readers is brilliant!

When we open the book, we see a sunshiny day, but a dark cloud coming into the picture with a big RUMBLE RUMBLE.

As the story begins, we see a dog and a cat sleeping. Another RUMBLE RUMBLE happens, and the dog sits up, wide-eyed, and says, "What is that?"

The cat opens one eye and says, "Nothing."

As the book continues, the dog is hyperaware of every sound and flash from the storm. The cat? She's playing with her mouse toy, oblivious. But the noises are getting louder....

Then, a giant BOOM BOOM with lightning takes up an entire spread, as both animals look out a sliding glass door. But as it goes on, the dog panics and the cat plays with a new toy.

Finally, a BOOM so big that even the cat is startled comes. The dog goes and hides in a closet. The cat plays with yet another toy.

But while in the closet, the dog falls asleep and dreams. He dreams he is a superhero fighting the storm.

So, when he wakes up and sees the storm is gone, his last happy line is, "I made the storm go away."

As usual, my description just doesn't do this book justice. The pictures of the panicking dog and the unconcerned cat will delight kids, picking up on the beautifully-expressed emotion in the illustrations. The dog taking credit for chasing away the storm is the perfect reversal ending. This light-hearted look at a pretty scary storm may help kids deal with their own fears of real storms, as they watch dog's antics from a safe place outside the book.

The perfect easy reader is one where you forget it's easy to read because the story is so engaging. This book achieves exactly that.