The Talk of the Town: Naughty Mabel by Nathan Lane and Devlin Elliott
"HEL-LO, DAR-LINGS. ALLOW ME TO INTRODUCE MYSELF~~MABEL OF THE HAMPTONS. AND THIS IS MY HUMBLE ABODE."
Mabel is one smug, posh pooch, a pampered pet French bulldog, with the emphasis on French. In her marbled mansion, she is the doggy diva of the house, indulged by her rich owners who dote on her despite her mischief-making.
"I AM NOT NAUGHTY
I AM VERY VERY NAUGHTY."
Between eating her mistress's diamonds, her master's watch, and anyone's underwear, Mabel careens about the grounds in her owner's golf cart and goes for "walks" in an elegant stroller pushed by her "parents" down only the best streets, don't you know! And as long as a bath is not involved (she is French, right?), a visit to the spa is her favorite destination.
"I KNOW A LADY ISN'T SUPPOSED TO REVEAL HER AGE, BUT I FEEL LIKE I KNOW YOU ALREADY--
I'M FIVE. OH, I KNOW I DON'T LOOK IT, BUT FIVE IS THE NEW THREE!"
But despite her aversion to sudsing, one day Mabel finds herself being given a bath! But, looking on the bright side, Mabel figures that she is being groomed for a party her parents are planning, and she happily imagines herself as the life of said soiree. She can't help boasting about her social life to her neighbor pets.
"SMARTY CAT AND SCAREDY CAT ARE JEALOUS BECAUSE THEIR HUMANS FALL ASLEEP WATCHING INFOMERCIALS!"
But on the night of the big do, Mabel finds herself stashed in her elegant bedroom early, while preparations for a posh cocktail party go on without her.
Well, that's what they think.
Mabel dons her red tutu, pearls, and red satin slippers, and slips downstairs to smooze with the best of the smart set. But she is waylaid by trays of cocktail pigs in blankets waiting to be served, and she noshes heavily before making her grand entrance.
And what an entrance it is! The guests are amused and whip out their cell phones to snap pictures of Mabel in her glittering party best. Her parents are not amused, and a chase ensues, with Mabel making quite the mess of the season's most lavish scene. And then Mabel, admitting that she has perhaps eaten too many pigs in their blankets, commits the foremost faux pas of the season.
"I SURE KNOW HOW TO CLEAR A ROOM!"
Unabashed, authors Lane and Elliot make the most of the cheap laugh at Mabel's climactic infraction, one that will keep kids laughing rip-roaringly long after the next pages are turned. Both authors are noted theatrical luminaries who doubtless have attended a few posh parties themselves and who glibly toss in some bon mots to amuse the adults reading this tale aloud. Noted film artist Dan Krall has a ball with his over-the-top illustrations of this life of the party who will be the talk of the town for several seasons.
Mabel may not be the pooch of choice for everyone, but she's certainly not your boring average mutt. As Booklist says, "Mabel is somewhere between Fancy Nancy and Rotten Ralph, and her uproarious party crashing is sure to charm little ones."