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Good Wolf

By Pamela Fay Griffin

ISBN: 1412063906
Review by: Shaun Perkins

07/06

Good Wolf is a children’s paperback picture book about a female wolf searching for her mate. Every page has brightly colored illustrations, which seem to be done in marker and colored pencil. The illustrations are interesting though not very professionally done. It appears that Griffin is working to fill in white space and so there are a series of swirls and slashes and scribbling marks that surround the animals on most of the pages. The quality of the artwork is also sporadic from page to page.

The story is rather long for a picture book and could have used some editing. The plot follows the wolf through the woods meeting all kinds of animals, until she finds a mate, and then they have children. It is a simple plot and could have been explored with a lot less wordiness. It is also a bit hard to read because of inconsistent punctuation and a prolific use of exclamation points, which usually just indicates that the words are not doing the work that they should.

There are a couple of lovely pages. I particularly like the page with a raccoon and two bears. The bears appear to be done in watercolor, and the composition of the animals and colors on the page is very nice. The simple and often forced rhyming pattern throughout hinders the overall effect of the story though. I think children would find the story rather boring. It is very difficult to pull off anthropomorphism on the scale that Griffin attempts.

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