Stay, Benson!


Stay, Benson!
Thereza Rowe
Thames & Hudson

Benson is, so owner Flick believes, the ideal dog. When she leaves home and heads off to school, he stays minding the house and of course, he always obeys her “You stay … No chasing!” command. Flick is confident of that but should she be?

What about the day when no sooner has she bid him farewell, than he’s sneaking off through the back door and teasing a black and white moggy in the garden.

Furthermore, under the impression, so he’d have us believe, Flick’s instruction was “Play Benson!” he begins chasing the cat.

The feline creature leaps over the fence but Benson digs beneath it and then the chase is well and truly on.

No matter what we tell him he insists he’s been told to “Play Benson!” and after scaring the cat out of its wits, he proceeds to chase a squirrel and then goes charging off into the playground after a ball.

Oh my goodness, now what? He certainly is in a playful mood. He’s soaked himself going after that ball

and it appears he’s a bit peckish too.

It’s as well he obeys the picnickers “GO HOME, BENSON!” command however. He makes it back just in the nick of time, for who should come through the door but Flick with a cheerful greeting and a couple of questions to which only we the readers (along with a few characters in the story) know the answers.

It’s impossible not to love this mischievous dog with his zest for life and playfulness portrayed in Thereza’s eye-catchingly bold, retro-style art with its occasional die-cuts and cutaway pages. Offering plenty of audience participation opportunities, her story is a fun read aloud and the built in repetition makes it ideal for those in the early stages of becoming a reader.

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