Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Claude on the Slopes

Claude on the Slopes

Alex T. Smith
Fiction  Series
For ages 6 to 8
Peachtree Publishers , 2013   ISBN: 978-1561458059

Every week day Claude the dog’s people go to work, and after they leave the house Claude and his best friend, Sir Bobblysock, go out to have an adventure. On Monday Claude and Sir Bobblysock (who is a sock) went to the library, and Claude made rather a nuisance of because he was noisy, which the librarian did not appreciate at all. Now it is Tuesday and when Claude gets up he is still in a “loud sort of mood.” He decides to go outside “to get some fresh air,” and when he gets outdoors he is shocked to discover that something rather dramatic has happened; it has snowed.

   Claude has never seen snow before and he is not sure what he is supposed to “do with it all,” and then some sledders and skiers go by. Though Claude is not sure what the people are doing, he cannot help being excited when he sees them. His bottom starts to “wag his tail” and his eyebrows start “jiggling uncontrollably.” Claude and Sir Bobblysock decide to follow the people and end up at the Snow Mountains Winter Sports Center. There are so many interesting things to look at and Claude decides that he will try doing the things he sees the humans doing.

   Claude tries throwing snowballs first, but he does not really enjoy that activity much so he goes sledding instead. It turns out that Claude is “a natural” when it comes to sledding, and he is soon whizzing down the slope with ease.

   Next Sir Bobblysock, who is a natural when it comes to making sand sculptures, enters a snowman making contest. Claude looks on anxiously as his little friends gets to work. Sand and snow may seem alike, but one never knows when it comes to making sculptures. In the end Sir Bobblysock wins the contest and Claude, naturally, cheers for his friend, which is when a very big man comes up and tells Claude that he has to stop being so loud. Being loud on a snowy mountain can be dangerous.

   Readers are going to enjoy this deliciously funny chapter book with its delightful characters. One might think that a sock couldn’t possibly have a personality, but Sir Bobblysock does, as does his adventurous dog companion. The humor in the story will appeal to children and their grownups alike, and everyone will be eager to find out what Claude is going to do next.