Lionel and Me

Lionel and Me
Corinne Fenton and Tracie Grimwood
New Frontier Publishing

This story of the effects Lionel, a small dachshund, has on a family is told from the viewpoint of Maverick, a golden retriever, that is already a well established and contented family member.

When he first arrives, the newcomer is no threat on account of his smallness and because he spends a lot of time asleep; he does leave stinky deposits indoors though and seemingly, whines constantly. Nor is Maverick’s exercise enjoyment intruded upon;

but gradually, Lionel becomes the centre of attention and a thorough nuisance: jealousy builds until Maverick decides enough is enough, his actions resulting in his banishment to the back garden.

Alone out in the cold, the retriever has lots of thinking time and he decides that all he needs to do is to wait patiently until the dachshund destroys his perfect pooch image. When he does it significantly and unexpectedly changes the canine relationship.

Beautifully portrayed in both Corinne’s words ( the dog characters are based on those of her own relations) and Tracie’s gently humorous illustrations this story of learning to accommodate a newcomer is relevant to many situations and is a lovely book to share with young children and talk about both at home or in the classroom.

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