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The case of the shipwrecked tree by John R.…

The case of the shipwrecked tree

by John R. Erickson

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Once again I was forced to check out a Hank the Cowdog book in print because none of our county libraries had the audio version of The Case of the Shipwrecked Tree. That meant I didn't get to hear Hank singing either 'The Turkey Song' or 'You Have to Grow Up, Boys'. Darn! At least I could hear the voices and some of the usual sound effects in my imagination.

As our book opens, Hank is making big claims about the 'Security Division's Vast Office Complex' *snicker* and what he's doing when Drover comes in to report that the wild turkeys that roam the Lopers' ranch are coming up to the gas tanks. It doesn't take long for the dogs' imaginations to take some wild leaps. (I liked Mr. Holmes' illustration of Murphy the lurking turkey spy.) Drover is sent to infiltrate the turkeys. His report is about as coherent as could be expected in this series.

Then it's Hank versus the mailman, who has the gall to drive up to the house instead of putting the mail in the mailbox. Hank didn't appreciate what the mailman did to get back at him for barking. I appreciated the ridiculous code names Hank came up with, especially when he and Drover got them mixed up.

What got delivered was a package for Little Alfred, which leads to a pretty funny reaction from the dogs. (Hank's terror of Alfred's mother, Sally May, was also funny).

One of the ranch's cottonwood trees becomes Little Alfred's pretend pirate ship. Things would have gone much better for Hank and the delicious-sounding tuna sandwiches Sally May prepared for her little pirate's lunch if her son hadn't used a bucket to haul Hank into the tree. He wouldn't have been able to haul Hank if Pete the Barncat hadn't been sneaking up that tree to get that tuna.

Hank leaps at Pete and finds himself clinging to a tree branch. Will his little pal be able to fetch his father and Slim Chance before Hank falls off?

If that's not bad enough, there's a thunderstorm coming and the buzzards want to shelter in that same tree. (Loved Wallace's words of 'encouragement' to Hank. I also loved Hank's list of the female dogs he claims had loved and adored him. Sorry, Hank, but only Missy Coyote is attracted to you.)

Mr. Holmes' illustrations are fun, but he drew Sally May Loper in pants when Mr. Erickson clearly stated that she was wearing a dress (see chapter 12), and Pete the Barncat has a muzzle like a dog's.

It's a good adventure.

The reader activity pages (124-126) are: 'Eye-Crosserosis,' 'Rhyme Time,' and '"Photogenic" Memory Quiz'. ( )
  JalenV | Apr 16, 2015 |
no reviews | add a review

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0142302252, Paperback)

When pirates are discovered on the ranch, it's Hank the Cowdog's job to check the situation out. But Hank has no idea what a run-in with pirates can lead to. Before he knows it, he's up a tree in Little Alfred's treehouse pirate ship-facing imminent disaster as a vicious storm approaches. Can he find a way out of this one? Or is Hank destined to be marooned on the high seas forever? Find out in this latest adventure starring everyone's favorite Head of Ranch Security.

Illustrated by Gerald L. Holmes.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:35 -0400)

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Hank and Little Alfred get into trouble while playing pirates.

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