For my November Book Scouts, I decided to capitalize on the popularity of Dog Man and try to encourage his fans to read a little more broadly.
The problem is that unlike Swashbuckling or Spooky Reads, I had zero experience with Dog Man. I’d never even read one of them (*gasp* I know, I’m horrible). I pulled the first book off the shelf and sat down with really good intentions of reading at least one all the way through. I just couldn’t make it. I’m ashamed to admit that I did not get very far. However, even though Dog Man isn’t my normal taste and something I found very hard to read personally, I could easily see why it has the kid appeal that it does. I’m extremely grateful for Dav Pilkey and his mission to reach reluctant readers, so please don’t think I’m being snobby or knocking the series at all. It’s just not my personal preference.
I say all of that to say that I had to do a lot more research and extra work to compose this list than I normally do. My criteria were vague, at best, but in general, I stuck to books with ridiculous humor, animal protagonists, an investigative/mystery/police element, graphic novel format, or some combination of all of these.
Also, unlike my other lists, I haven’t read very many of the books on this one simply because it’s not my preferred genre/style. But I am always encouraging kids to move outside of their comfort zone when it comes to reading, so compiling this list and preparing for this program was a great exercise in practicing what I preach. Some of these may be a stretch and I’m sure you probably have more and better recommendations, so please feel free to share them in the comments!
Attack of the 50-Foot Fluffy by Mike Boldt
Misunderstood Shark by Ame Dyckman
Read the Book, Lemmings! by Ame Dyckman
Thunder Pug by Kim Norman
Llama Destroys the World by Jonathan Stutzman
Big Bunny by Rowboat Watkins
Chapter Books & Graphic Novels
Inspector Flytrap (series) by Tom Angleberger
Kid Spy (series) by Mac Barnett
The Bad Guys (series) by Aaron Blabey
Flora & Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo
The Flying Beaver Brothers (series) by Maxwell Eaton III
Ra the Mighty (series) by Amy Greenfield
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Squirrel Meets World by Shannon & Dean Hale
Mr. and Mrs. Bunny – Detectives Extraordinaire! by Polly Horvath
Megabat (series) by Anna Humphrey
Snazzy Cat Capers (series) by Deanna Kent
Platypus Police Squad (series) by Jarrett Krosoczka
The Infamous Ratsos (series) by Kara LaReau
Clueless McGee (series) by Jeff Mack
Julius Zebra (series) by Gary Northfield
Pugs of the Frozen North by Philip Reeve
The Yeti Files (series) by Kevin Sherry
Thundercluck! (series) by Paul Tillery IV & Meg Wittwer
Stick Dog (series) by Tom Watson
The Truth About…(series) by Maxwell Eaton III
Pipsqueaks, Slowpokes, and Stinkers: Celebrating Animal Underdogs by Melissa Stewart