Dogs are well-represented on the 2012 2 x 2 list.
Rrralph is about a talking dog - the narrator explains that Rrralph can speak, even if you don't believe it, and goes on to ask Rrralph a series of questions which Rrralph answers (for example: "How does the path feel on your paws, Ralph?" "Ruff!" or "What's that on the side of the tree?" "Bark!").
It's a quick little read, with bright colors and not all that much text. Bart, I think, got a particular kick out of this book, which didn't surprise me, given his love of puns.
I have to say, although I know that Lois Ehlert is wildly popular, her style is not my favorite. Ella, however, seems to love it and has selected several of her books off the shelves at the library. So what do I know about kid appeal? (Nothing, apparently).
I worried that Dog in Boots would be too text-heavy for Ella to really sit thorugh, but she surprised me by loving this book and we read it a dozen times during the several weeks we had it checked out from the library.
Dog finishes reading Puss in Boots and decides that what he needs is a very fine pair of boots. But when he buys some, he realizes they are horrible for digging in as they get dirty, very quickly. He exchanges them for a pair of rain boots which do indeed wash right off after a busy dig, but when he tries to swim in them, they fill with water and nearly drown Dog. As he continues to return to the store for a pair of shoes that will fit his immediate need, he eventually discovers that his paws are the best shoes of all (aw, how sweet).
Happy little illustrations and a fast-moving storyline make this a nice read, although not one I'm dying to own or think is going to become an instant classic.