So how do I explain this one? Bob's mom forgets about him outside her beauty parlour but luckily 3 dogs find him and raise him. Being raised by dogs makes him bashful. Meantime, Dorinda's parents have disappeared leaving her to be raised by distant relatives who neglect her. Dorinda gets fed up and leaves, whereupon she finds Bob. She teaches Bob to act like a person. Just as he's getting the hang of it, a mislabelled buffalo reeks havoc on the town. Bob and Dorinda face their fears and become heroes.
If you want to twist your tongue and expand your child's vocabulary, then Bashful Bob and Doleful Dorinda by Margaret Atwood is for you. I was exhausted after reading it outloud. I also had to explain many of the words to my girl. Not such a bad thing. But the alliteration tends to get a bit grating.
I've read some other reviewers who had problems with Bob's abandonment and Dorinda's parents' accident. I wasn't bothered by it. I mean, Hansel and Gretel's parents abandon them in the woods, and Peter Rabbit's dad gets put in a pie. Not all kids' stories are filled with rainbow farting unicorns. I wouldn't read this to very young children anyway- the language is too grand. Let's not forget, this is Atwood.
Anyway, my daughter likes it, especially the illustrations by Dusan Petricic, and that's all that matters.
Read for the 3rd Canadian Book Challenge