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Though the author/illustrator may be quiet, her book characters are often loquacious and effusive — like the little pig who outwitted a wolf, or the rat that worked for Cinderella, and especially Martha the dog. Meddaugh writes and illustrates books for young readers that are perfect to share one-on-one or with small groups, so that readers can see the humor in the delicate line and funny asides. So open a book by Susan Meddaugh and come to know her quirky, often magical characters — human and animal alike are sure to delight.
Life as a rat isn't easy, according to the narrator, a rat himself. He remains a rat at heart even when he's magically transformed into a coachboy who takes a certain girl to a castle party. The zany plot twists, turns, and culminates into a laugh out loud, satisfying conclusion.
A young pig tells her tale of how she outwits a hungry but not-too-bright wolf. She convinces him that the recipe (in which she will be the main ingredient) that it needs a special leaf from the forest (really poison ivy) and that her 'hog eye' bewitches him into uncontrollable itching.
Lulu is tapped to travel with her magician uncle, considered a waste by her cousins as she shows no apparent aptitude for magic. But Lulu has an amazing talent which becomes evident in this madcap adventure that involves a bad boy, a loyal dog, and lots of laughs.
When her family brings home a puppy, Martha must establish herself as the alpha dog in the family, particularly when Skits knocks over Martha's alphabet soup (which is why she can talk!). Skits can't articulate like Martha but she helps him recognize his other special talents with good-humor.
In her 3rd adventure, Martha figures out a way to return all of the letters of the alphabet (and their makers) to the factory that makes alphabet soup. It's the full complement of letters that allow Martha to remain a very communicative canine. Wordplay and fun are all here.
There are three words that Martha absolutely hates; these are: No Dogs Allowed. So when Martha wins a weekend for her (human) family at the Do-Come-Inn, those words propel the Martha and the family into action with very funny results.
When Martha, a slightly frumpy white and brown mutt, eats alphabet soup, the letters go to her head not to her stomach. The result is the first in a series of very funny adventures with a talking dog and her sometimes flummoxed human family.
When Bob moves into the neighborhood, it becomes clear that the large and noisy canine is a bully. Kinder words, however, turn Bobís behavior around at a crucial moment for Martha! Casual, comic illustrations combine with very funny text (and lots of ballooned conversations).
The entire town is scammed by the new Perfect Pup Institute but not Martha. She discovers that the partners who run it are using the RoboRover Brain Stopper and saves the day (and the dogs). As all of the Martha tales, this is told and illustrated with lots of humor and verve.
When Helen and her dog Martha, costumed as a witch and a cat, try to return an old lady's dropped note, they enter a supermarket. It's only when they notice the odd twists on ordinary items that they figure out what type of market they're in. This funny tale lasts beyond Halloween.
Harry rescues a bird, naming her Sally. Sally will not survive winter outdoors — and neither will the flock that comes for her; they turn blue as the weather gets colder. Harry saves Sally and the entire tree full of 'Green Tufted Tropical' birds in an unexpected way.
Margaret discovers its real value when a witch offers her gold to retrieve a walking stick. Not only does Margaret use the stick's magic to teach her nasty older siblings a lesson, the magic is used up to prevent the witch from doing more mean tricks on hapless animals — all with a light and humorous touch.
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