Saturday, February 8, 2020

Review: Such a Good Boy by Marianna Coppo

by Marianna Coppo
Chronicle Books
Picture Book
48 pages
ages 5 to 8

The ultimate kids' book about dogs, being good, being bad, and being yourself!

From the award-winning, critically acclaimed author of Petra.

Meet Buzz the dog.

He's such a good boy.

Buzz seems to have a perfect life .. .

and a lot of very well-behaved friends.

Buzz would never dream of being anything other than good.

Right, Buzz?
Buzz . . . ?

For anyone who has ever felt pressure to be "good" at the expense of their own self-expression, and for anyone who has ever owned and loved a dog, this beautifully illustrated picture book from author-illustrator Marianna Coppo will have you laughing, smiling, and longing for your own unfettered frolic in the park.

• With charming art and a positive message, this is an ideal read-aloud book for parents and children to share.
• For dog lovers, pet lovers, and any kid who knows how hard it is to be good all the time
• Marianna Coppo's first book, Petra, was a Good Reads Choice Awards Picture Book Finalist and received starred reviews from Publisher's Weekly and Kirkus.

For dog-loving children and fans of such picture books as GastonHarry the Dirty Dog, Antoinette, and Naughty Mabel.

For any child who struggles to be "good" and understands the fun (and frustration) of being "bad."

• Picture books for kids ages 5–8
• Dog books for kids
• Books about acceptance, self-confidence, and being yourself


This little dog, Buzz,  seems to have everything it could possibly want—a wonderful home, food, and care. But it's life might just be too wonderful. As perfect as everything seems, Buzz isn't given the freedoms he'd like to have. He can't talk t strangers, or waste time or anything he might want to do for fun. Until one day, when he runs away...

Buzz is super cute, and it's extremely easy for young listeners/readers to fall right into his tale and just want to hug him. It's clear that he has everything a dog could want, and yet, it's clear why he might not be satisfied. After all, what kid doesn't want to run out and play? So when he gets the chance to have fun on his own, the joy carries over and brings smiles. It's a book and character to enjoy.

Even the illustrations are well done and fun to gaze at. While simple in some ways, they bring across Buzz's situation well, and give off a lovely atmosphere.

My only problem with this tale is the ending. First, my kids and I weren't one hundred percent sure what happened to Buzz...if he's found or simply continues to enjoy the free life. Either way, the message isn't exactly what parents will want to bring across to kids—if you don't get what you want, run away and then you will.  Which is too bad because I believe the author might have been shooting for 'be true to yourself'. 

In any case, I did enjoy the book quite a did my kids. Buzz is definitely a dog to love and keep.

And here she is...

Marianna Coppo is an author-illustrator who studied editorial illustration at MiMaster in Milan, Italy. Her first book in the United States, Petra, was published to critical acclaim. She lives in Rome.

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