Monday, March 31, 2008

LaRue for Mayor

In LaRue for Mayor: Letters from the Campaign Trail, by author and illustrator Mark Teague, the lovable, crafty, misunderstood pup Ike LaRue returns for another letter writing crusade; and this time takes his "campaign" to the office of mayor. An afternoon in the park with a few friends and his owner results in an unfortunate accident sending Mrs. LaRue to the hospital ("Who knew that hot-dog carts were so unstable?"). Left to his own devices Ike forms a social club, befriending his rambunctious new mates, that soon runs amok. When former police chief Bugwort announces his candidacy for mayor and declares dogs in the city must be kept under control or banned from the city, Ike decides he has had enough and is soon running his own campaign for mayor.

Teague's trademark LaRue illustrations, bold, eye-catching color for reality juxtaposed with black and white renditions of LaRue's interpretation of the same and accompanying typed letters, fill each double page spread. Ike's typed letters overflow with snappy repartee, reporting to Mrs. LaRue what is happening during her period of recuperation and assuring her "Nothing will distract me from this important cause." Readers may guess where this installment will end, but following the campaign trail is definitely worth their time.

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