JAKE AND THE PURPLE UNICORN | Kirkus Reviews



In Hardy’s appealing sequel, a shaggy, white puppy named Jake, a relatable child substitute, falls asleep in his cozy bed and is off to dreamland, looking for adventure. Jake finds it, meeting up with his pal Tedd the toad and driving the amphibian’s car to a forest where the canine makes a new friend, Gwen the Unicorn. Gwen invites Jake to jump on her back and hold on as she soars up into the sky and then straight down to the ocean floor, where diversions await. Among the numerous undersea sights that the author’s rhyming text describes to tickle funny bones are “Wizards and lizards / and goats on floats / They saw sharks named Mark / and seals with wheels.” LL’s colorful, digital art enhances the overall gentle silliness with a wealth of visual whimsy: A seal wears blue roller skates; a goat lounges on a pizza float; whales knit sweaters; and starfish play basketball. (Readers will have fun, too, going through the pages to spot Jake’s squirrel friend in each image.) After Jake wakes up and a certain discovery makes him wonder if he is “really awake, or am I still dreaming?” Hardy invites reader involvement: “He had no clue what was really true / so tell me, dear friend / do you??”



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