Tuesday, March 27, 2018

"Finding Gobi for Little Ones" by Dion Leonard, illustrated by Lisa Manuzak

Finding Gobi for Little Ones is a 24-page board book. The pages are flimsy board for older children, which the publisher suggests is appropriate for ages 4-8. Notably, this is the same range as the paper children's book version, Gobi: A Little Dog with a Big Heart.

All versions of this book (also including an adult version and a young reader's version Finding Gobi: The True Story of One Little Dog's Big Journey) tell the true story of an adult ultramarathon runner, Dion Leonard, running a race in the Gobi desert and encountering a little dog that runs along with him. He names the dog Gobi and she runs the entire race with him, facing challenges such as a dangerous river crossing. The theme throughout is repeated that they will be forever friends.

This version of the book has the same illustrations as Gobi, the paper children's book version. However, there is just over half of the amount of text, suggesting that though the publisher classifies this as the same age range, this is the younger version of the book (also because it has board book pages). There is less dialogue and the text more closely relates to the illustrations.

Of the three children's versions of the book, this one is my favorite. I really enjoyed the illustrations, with the adorable Gobi pup winking, begging, and jumping for joy. The amount of text is just right, without including unnecessary additional text. I do like that the young reader's version gave a more full account of what happened after the race (and the paper version even had an author's note explaining some of the aftermath as well). However, the core of this story is the race and the incredible dog that could keep up with the runners.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher, but was not required to post a positive review.

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