Hairy Maclary Scattercat


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About the Author

Lynley Dodd graduated from the Elam School of Art in Auckland with a diploma in Fine Arts, majoring in sculpture. She went on to teach art before taking a break to start a family. She began to work as a freelance illustrator and collaborated with author Eve Sutton on My Cat Likes To Hide in Boxes. There was no looking back as Lynley went on to write and illustrate her own books for children. Exuberant artwork and bouncy rhymes come together perfectly in books like Slinky Malinki and Hairy Maclary from Donaldson's Dairy. As well as being a visual delight, these are some of the most rewarding books for children and adults to read out loud. It comes as no surprise that, as a child, she adored Dr Seuss because of his 'crazy sounds and the fact that he took such liberties with the English language.' Other favourite authors included A A Milne and the fairy tales of The Grimm Brothers and Hans Christian Andersen. Today, Lynley is a big fan of Quentin Blake 'because of his humour and very clever art work.'


PreS-Gr 2 In Hairy Maclary Scattercat, the furry dog ``felt bumptious and bustly, bossy and bouncy and frisky and hustly.'' After scaring off five different cats, along comes Scarface Claw, who chases the dog ``ALL the way home.'' The bouncy rhyming text is often forced with uncommon names and words. Illustrations are colorful, clear, and give a good portrayal of the animals, but Hairy Maclary makes a much better impression in the previous books about him (all Gareth Stevens). Wake Up, Bear is set in the spring, and Bear's friends try to awaken him. Lion roars, Squirrel drops a nut, Monkey tickles his toes, etc.but Bear sleeps on until Bee buzzes around and reminds Bear of honey, causing him to awaken. Clear and colorful illustrations supplement the simple-minded, predictable story. There are also some major flaws. Bear is under a Bulbul tree, which is not listed in a standard encyclopedia or dictionary. (A bulbul is a kind of tropical bird.) Also children will be quick to note that a mixed bag of jungle, forest, and domestic animals, obviously out of their habitats, try to wake Bear. Almost any picture book collection can deliver a more credible animal story that will prove more enjoyable. Although the back of the book lists these books among others as ``Gold Star First Readers,'' they have too many difficult words for beginning readers. Nancy A. Gifford, Schenectady County Public Library, N.Y.

"When Cassie the cockatoo plucks a hair from the hide of Hairy Maclary, the deed sets in motion a rambunctious, rhyming riot," said PW of the first title. "With amusing alliteration, fanciful names and rapid-fire delivery, this book will tickle the funnybones of parents and children alike." Ages 2-5. (Mar.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

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