Rescue Me! The Grumpy Pets by Kristine A Lombardi
MOM TOOK BILLY AND SARA TO PERFECT PETS ONE SATURDAY.
MOM WORRIED THAT BILLY ALWAYS SEEMED TO BE UNHAPPY. SHE HOPED A SPECIAL TRIP WOULD GIVE HIM A REASON TO SMILE.
Little sister Sara gloms immediately on the cute kitties and perky puppies up front in the store.
WHO COULDN'T SMILE WITH SUCH CUTENESS AROUND?
Well, Billy, for one. The cutesy critters hold no appeal for him. Blech!
While Sara coos over the kittens, Billy drifts down the aisles toward the rear of the store. Way past the big boxes and bags of pet chow, there are some animal crates stacked back there, and he hears a few growls and hisses. Billy is curious.
He soon sees why. These animals are NOT cute. There's a snarly lizard, a huffy hedgehog, and a truly intimidating turtle.
ROW UPON ROW OF SCRUFFY, GROUCHY FACES.
THEY WERE CREEPY, CRANKY, AND MOODY.
Suddenly, Billy feels right at home with these grumpy pets. And then he sees the little grouchy gray dog. He makes a mean face at the dog, and the dog returns the frown right back. Billy steps up closer and their eyes meet.
SLURP! The grumpy dog likes him!
"I'LL TAKE HIM!" SAYS BILLY, WITH A SMILE.
Billy finds his soulmate pet, in Kristine A. Lombardi's The Grumpy Pets (Abrams Books, 2016). With Grumpy Cat a media star, cranky critters have come to have a certain cachet, and Lombardi's illustrations give even the grumpy pets a certain appeal that kids will get right away. Billy goes home as happy as he can be, and even the dog seems to have found a bit of a smile in this animal rescue story with a double happy ending.
For a perfect pairing of happy pet endings, read this one with Val Jones' heartwarming story about a gung-ho dog who has a hard time making a good first impression in her Who Wants Broccoli?(See my 2015 review here.)