Title: Dumpster Dog (Chien Pourri in French) This is Book 1 in a new series called The Adventures of Dumpster Dog.
Author: Colas Gutman
Illustrator: Marc Boutavant
Publisher: Enchanted Lion Press, 2019
Translated from French by: Claudia Bedrick & Allison M. Charette
Themes: cats, dogs, friendship, humor, outcasts, animal suffering, rejection
Dumpster Dog was born in a dumpy, old garbage can. There are many rumors about him: He might have been abandoned by his parents, he smells like sardines, and he can’t tell his right from his left…
Dumpster Dog dreams of treats, balls, and leashes. He wants someone to play with, someone who will take him on long walks, someone who will feed him–he wants a master. So begins Dumpster Dog’s search for a human companion. But he will soon learn that finding a good master isn’t as easy as it sounds, and that the world can be a dangerous place.
Why I like this book:
I love the absurdist French humor, and the friendship between Dumspter Dog and the cat with whom he shares his garbage can, Flat Cat. It doesn’t have the happy ending one would expect for this age group as Dumpster Dog is really the anti-hero, flea-ridden, a little slow on the uptake, ugly but adorable.
Amidst the humor and endearing art by Marc Boutavant, it is a beautiful and sad story about animal suffering in our society: abandonment, vagrancy, rejection, human cruelty, lies… it packs some epic subject matter in its 47 pages. Truly you can tell this is a foreign import, which I love.