Parents' Guide to

Naughty Mabel Sees It All

By Jan Carr, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 4+

Diva dog needs glasses in story heavy on adult humor.

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This book about a pampered pup who lives the Hamptons high life but discovers she needs glasses is blurry on the difference between a kid-friendly book and one with overly sophisticated adult humor. To satisfy the juvenile humor, Naughty Mabel Sees It All includes two fart jokes, but it's also filled with adult references that will sail high over kids' heads, including mentions of Martha Stewart, Bette Davis, and a "second date." Some story threads remain stubbornly unclear -- does Mabel feel queasy because she ate potpourri or because she's having vision problems? And if it's simple nearsightedness (myopia), why does she see double? Amblyopia (lazy eye) would explain multiple images, but probably wouldn't be corrected with glasses alone.

Dan Krall's zippy illustrations evidence his savvy know-how as a seasoned animator, and the art often clarifies the text. On one fun page the images on an eye chart morph from hieroglyph monsters to the standard letters of an E chart when Mabel dons corrective lenses. Mabel, a larger-than-life diva, is most fun when her experiences and references are relatable for kids.

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