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Margaret Morgan

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Member Since: Jan, 2006

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Wuffy the Wonder Dog, DragonPencil 2006 Award Winner
by Margaret Morgan  Vanessa Knight - Illustrator 

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Publisher:  Wingspan Press ISBN-10:  1595940340 Type: 


Copyright:  Jan 2006

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Overlooked Books
Wuffy the Wonder Dog

Wuffy the Wonder Dog, the "one and only" Wuffy in the entire world, is a puppy of many talents. Wuffy paints (not very well) and writes songs (in Wuffanese, of course), but he is most proud of his operatic voice and his bushy tail, both of which often get him into trouble.
Wuffy’s best friend—whenever she allows it—is a "well-educated" cat named Elizabeth, who doesn't always value Wuffy or his talents. Wuffy’s mission in life is to become something—anything—for which she will appreciate him. Whether he is a scientist experimenting on chocolate, an actor playing the role of a gentle wolf, a doctor who cures sick little girls better than chicken soup, a hunter, a poet, or any of his other chosen vocations—Wuffy always has the best intentions and the noblest goals. Unfortunately, the outcome of his attempts to impress Elizabeth usually isn't quite what he expects.
Though the road to wisdom is not a straight path for Wuffy the Wonder Dog, he learns many lessons along the way. He also teaches his readers the power of friendship and forgiveness.


Professional Reviews

Wuffy the Wonder Dog
Wuffy really thinks he's a Wonder Dog, even though his feline friend Elizabeth constantly brings him down a peg like a practical big sister. Nevertheless, even Elizabeth's chiding never sways Wuffy from thinking he's able to do impossible things.

Margaret Morgan's Wuffy the Wonder Dog is a short collection of sixteen stories about Wuffy's aspirations. A young pup, Wuffy imagines he can be and do anything from being a doctor, a painter, an actor, or a mathematician. Each time, he gets himself into trouble or realizes that he just may have aimed a bit too high (at least for the time being). Through all his adventures, he keeps trying to impress Elizabeth and convince her that he is lovable. When Wuffy rescues Elizabeth from a speeding car, he realizes that the cat does appreciate him, but he still milks his heroism for all it's worth. It isn't until he gets into a mess by hiding in the sooty fireplace that he realizes that Elizabeth has been watching his back all along and letting him explore infinite possibility.

Morgan's stories are charming and funny. The stories all end with the same lines: "One cannot ruin a friendship because of a little silliness, right? One has to be mature. And Wuffy was very mature." Wuffy may not be mature, but Wuffy is right. Small things don't ruin friendships.

Each story is accompanied by a black and white drawing by Vanessa Knight, either of Wuffy in one of his poses or in action with Elizabeth. Readers see how funny Wuffy is in all of his personas.
© 2006

Wuffy the Wonder Dog can become every child's best friend!
Wuffy the Wonder Dog can become every child's best friend! The sweetness and simplicity of these stories holds a special appeal to young readers, while the adventures of this adorable puppy teach some valuable lessons.

Wuffy is unique, the "one and only". He has many talents, a healthy curiosity for life and places a high value on friendship. Each short story is fast-paced and filled with a delightful combination of creativity and common sense. The vocabulary is controlled, which makes the book perfect for both early readers as well as a younger audience who may prefer to have it read aloud. Lively dialogue and engaging adventures fill these pages and cause this playful puppy to dash into the minds of children. Cute illustrations add another dimension to these tales and will cause a few smiles.

The author obviously knows this age group and has created characters with lovable traits and caring hearts. Wuffy's best friend is a cat named Elizabeth. He seems to stumble over himself in an effort to get her to appreciate him, only to realize that friendship is more than impressing the other person. There are subtle lessons about life and growing up in this book, yet it's more of a quiet whisper among the giggles. Wuffy comes alongside the reader to share his adventures and thoughts, but never acts in a condescending way to his audience.

Friendship and forgiveness are the main themes, and the author gently connects the events in Wuffy's life to those of his readers In that magical connection that comes from reading a book, children will find themselves loving Wuffy and listening to him. And that will certainly cause his big bushy tail to wag!

Joyce Handzo, In the Library Reviews

Do you talk to your pots and pans?
Do you talk to your pots and pans? Your sewing machine? Your Hoover? I do. Now, can you imagine how much pleasure one can derive from a conversation with a pet? It’s almost unbearable to get that kind of response from someone who can, well, react. My daughter says, ‘Mom, as long as they don’t talk back, you’re fine.’ I want to believe her, but, at the same time, I still retain the teeniest-tiniest hope that, at some point, they will abandon their silent treatment and respond empathically, just like she used to. She now lives far away and doesn’t have any time for my nonsense.

A long time ago I had a dog. He was a mutt; I brought him home from work where he found a refuge until something more suitable would come around. He was young and trashy and quite unreasonable. I loved him to death, which came untimely, even for someone with such a complete disregard for a much superior forces in life – bigger dogs, fast cars and unfriendly people. I was devastated, and for a very long time wouldn’t even dream of getting another dog - or any pet, for that matter.

And then I came across this little book, ‘Wuffy the Wonder Dog.’ I caught myself smiling while reading it, and, when I turned the last page, I couldn’t stop smiling. Now, I am a grumpy 50-plus house frau, and it’s been quite a while since that happened to me. Playful, mischievous, endearing, and ‘very mature,’ Wuffy the Dog struck me, first and foremost, as Wuffy the Friend, Wuffy the Philosopher, Wuffy the Soul mate.

This little book belongs on the PHILIP WARD'S A LIFETIME'S READING for children and parents of all ages. I used to be a librarian, and many a time I, first in my mind, then in my computer, frantically searched for something new and fresh and funny and fun to recommend to the kids and their parents who hovered over my desk, not knowing what exactly they are in the mood for today.

This little book now has a very special place in my heart. I’ve never met Wuffy the Dog and his friend, Elizabeth the Cat, but, hopefully, I will. And, even though Wuffy is, and always will be, in his words, ‘the one and only Wuffy in the whole entire world,’ perhaps, someday some dog or cat will trust me enough to have me as their friend. And that will be very mature on their part.
Sarah Azarnova

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