The Welcome Home

 
4.5 (2)
 
0.0 (0)
176 0
The Welcome Home
Age Range
4+
Release Date
September 19, 2023
ISBN
978-1534492325
Buy This Book
      
“The gorgeous illustrations and lovely storyline make this an instant classic.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

From the creator of The Big Umbrella comes another poetic and lushly illustrated picture book about the joy of companionship and there always being room for one more in this tale about the search for the perfect pet.

Mr. and Mrs. Gargleson-Bittle are looking for a change. Their life has become too quiet, and little changes like eating waffles only help for a moment. They decide to get a pet—but what kind should they have? First they welcome a snail into their home, then an elephant named Louise, then an aardvark named Sam.

One by one they come, and while the house is definitely no longer quiet, Mr. and Mrs. Gargleson-Bittle still have room and love for more. Could this waggy, lick-your-face puppy be what makes their family complete?

Editor reviews

2 reviews
Young Readers in on the joke
Overall rating
 
4.8
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
4.0
The Welcome Home was an unexpectedly silly book. Mr. and Mrs. Gargleson Bittle want a specific experience with a pet. They would like to have something soft, waggy, and a bit lick-your-face and play-catch. I bet you know what kind of pet would fit that criterion perfectly but did you think snail? With each page, a new and hilarious animal joins the family which is sure to delight young readers who are in on the joke the whole time. There is a nice throwback at the end that connects the beginning and end of the story perfectly.
The illustrations are detailed and colorful. The colored pencil style gives it a soft and gentle feel. The only thing I found is that as the menagerie of pets grew the individual pets blended into the page and didn’t have the definition between them that I would have found easier to look at.
Overall, this is a fun read perfect for Preschool and Elementary readers who will delight in the humor of finding that special pet. This would be great for fans of THE DAY JIMMY’S BOA ATE THE WASH by Trinka Hakes Noble.

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charming picture book about pets
Overall rating
 
4.3
Plot
 
4.0
Characters
 
4.0
Writing Style
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
5.0
THE WELCOME HOME is a sweet and silly picture book about the search for the perfect pet. Mr. and Ms. Gargleson-Bittle are missing something. They would like to have something soft, waggy, and a bit lick-your-face and play-catch, so they get a snail. The snail is great, but they still want something else, so they get an elephant. They continue adding to their house with all sorts of animals, until a new one shows up on their doorstep. They aren't sure what it is (dog), but it completes their family and leaves them perfectly content.

What I loved: The illustrations are soft and lovely with a sketch-like appearance and so much detail throughout. It captures the joy and wild feeling of so many animals in one house. Animal lovers will love this idea of a whole menagerie of pets, and the story gives them names to add to the fun. Young readers will understand from the start that what the Gargleson-Bittles are actually looking for is a dog, and so it becomes a silly game as they find all sorts of animals that sort of match the qualities of a dog in one way or another. For instance, the elephant is sort of waggy with its trunk. This also encourages children to consider how animals that seem vastly different may have some similarities and to think creatively.

The font is clear and easy to read throughout. The length of the story and of the text on some pages will lend itself best to elementary school aged readers, who will also understand the jokes around the search for a dog and then not knowing what it is when it shows up at the end. The story also has a nice loop, since they started out by eating waffles and then named the dog waffles.

Final verdict: THE WELCOME HOME is a charming and silly picture book about the search for the perfect pet and the joy of animals.
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