Dog Man Unleashed
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Gr 1-4--Readers who enjoyed Dog Man will be pleased to see Pilkey deliver the same blend of over-the-top plot turns and hilariously irreverent humor. This time, the title character (the result of medical surgery that fused a canine and a policeman after an accident) is tasked with buying his boss, the police chief, a birthday present. When the pet he purchases turns out to be an evil fish, wacky high jinks ensue. And there's more trouble on the horizon. Angry that a mysterious stranger is framing him for robbery, Dog Man's nemesis, Petey the cat, escapes from prison to clear his name. Meanwhile, the decoy that Petey uses to make his getaway, a flat paper cat, comes to life. Once again, Dog Man must put things right, relying on his keen ability to fight crime while also attempting to stifle some of his canine urges. Pilkey uses the premise that the comic has been penned by George and Harold, two elementary school students, and the artwork and story are delightfully childlike. The illustrations have been rendered with a thick-lined scrawl and simple shapes, and intentional misspellings and errors are sprinkled throughout. While the sentence structure is simple and concise, Pilkey displays a sense of sophistication, including clever puns and wordplay, as well as a clear mastery of sequential art, making this an ideal option for both reluctant and more advanced readers. VERDICT An entertainingly zany addition to graphic novel collections; for series fans and newcomers alike.--Mahnaz Dar, School Library Journal
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