"City Dog, Country Frog" by Mo Willems is a book I was immediately drawn to because Mo Willems is a favorite children's book author and illustrator of mine. However, from the cover, you would never know it is a Mo Willems book, because it is illustrated by someone else.
I was pleased to find that I was not disappointed after reading it. The story is about a dog from the city (City Dog) who visits the country for the first time. It is springtime and City Dog meets Country Frog who he befriends. The two new friends continue meeting and playing; enjoying the changing of the seasons together. However, winter comes and Country Frog is nowhere to be found. The story really tugs on your heart strings as you see City Dog sitting on "their" rock as he is waiting devotedly for his friend all winter long. Then when spring returns, another little critter, Country Chipmunk finds a very sad City Dog sitting on a rock. Country Chipmunk talks to City Dog, and soon you will find that City Dog will have a new friend for the seasons to come.
Once again, Mo Willems has not failed to convey humor and emotion in his stories. It is enjoyable to see the blossoming unlikely friendship between City Dog and Country Frog and the games they play are cute and humorous: seeing Country Frog sitting on City Dog's head in the pond or Country Frog throwing sticks for City Dog to fetch. However, I kept waiting for Country Frog to pop up out of the pond somewhere when spring returned and when he is never seen again it is a sad moment of loss for City Dog and readers. However, it is endearing to know that he will never be forgotten by City Dog, just as all friends are not forgotten if we remember them. This is a very heartwarming story that children and adults alike can enjoy together.
Recommended by Amanda Jenkins