Donaldson, Julia. The Fish who Cried Wolf. Illus. Axel Scheffler. New York: Levine Books, 2007.
Tiddler, a very small fish, is almost always late to school. He always has some fantastic tale to explain his absence. His adventures with seahorses, stingrays, dolphins, mermaids, and squids all explain his tardiness. One day, while thinking up a new story (penguins this time), Tiddler is caught in a fishing net. He eventually makes it to school. Surprisingly, no one believes his tale, though for once Tiddler is telling the truth.
What I thought: This story puts a neat twist on the old tale "The boy who cried wolf." Using animals will interest children more readily in the story. I like that the story is open-ended. Tiddler doesn't receive any censure for telling tales, but readers are sure to recognize that there could be consequences for such behavior. The vibrant illustrations add to the story. The illustrator gives each fish in the story a personality.
Fox, Mem. A Particular Cow. Illus. Terry Denton. Orlando: Harcourt, 2006.
Cow likes to take a walk every Saturday. Normally, her walks are uneventful. But one particular Saturday, she runs afoul of a pair of bloomers. With her sight obstructed, Cow gets into quite a mess. She knocks over the mailman, runs into a pack of dogs and a group of children, busts up a wedding, and upsets some sailors. After all that mess, Cow's walk continues in the usual uneventful fashion.
What I Thought: What a delightful story. Cow's escapades are amusing and constructed in a pleasing fashion. I particular like the speech bubbles the illustrator gives the characters. It adds another dimension to the story.