Dorothy McMoogle with Kumquat and Bugle

24 January 2014

Dorothy McMoogle with Kumquat and Bugle
by Bruce Rice, Illustrated by Wendy Winter
Published by Wild Sage Press
Review by Jessica Bickford
$25.00 978-0-9881229-5-6

Dorothy McMoogle with Kumquat and Bugle is just as playful a read as you can gather from the title. This book is written in a fun, lilting rhyme that just begs to be read aloud; Bruce Rice has certainly caught upon what kids and their grown-ups like most from a story time book. Dorothy McMoogle plays with language in a way that will not only help young readers learn to deal with some more complex sounds, but will make it a joy for their grown-ups to read to them.

It’s not just the story, but the illustrations by Wendy Winter that make Dorothy McMoogle such a delightful little romp. There are so many playful details in the illustrations that you’re likely to take as long looking at them as you do reading the words on each page. Dorothy’s boring day is brought to life beautifully through the pictures and I have to say that my personal favourite is Dottie Aunt Lottie’s Gloom-O-Meter that goes from danger, to dull, dreadful, dreary, and finally dings out doomed!

The story itself is equal parts nonsense and a lesson in the power of imagination and being true to yourself. Dorothy herself is cute and energetic as she fights against the grey not only in her own day, but in her neighbourhood, even as her parents tell her to just be like the other kids. She has a big imagination, so with a little help from Aunt Lottie, she manages to transform the world around her with art, music and, of course, kumquats.


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