Show Time! (Hot Dog! # 7)

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Anh Do (text) and Dan McGuiness (illustrator), Show Time! (Hot Dog! # 7), Scholastic Australia, November 2019, 128 pp, RRP $12.99 (pbk), ISBN 9781742997889 

Hotdog, Lizzie and Kev – dog, lizard and cat – are keen to win the Toy Town Talent Show. But the competition is going to be tough so they will need to come up with an act to really WOW the audience. The three best friends try out a few ideas before finally settling on a performance that they believe will make them the winners.  

As well as Hot Dog, Lizzie and Kev being great friends with each other, they are kind and generous to all those they meet in their adventures. This likable trio is always ready to help and support others and, while they really want to win the Talent Show, they admire the performances of the other entrants – especially the Daredevil Hamsters.  

Hot Dog! # 7 Show Time continues the tale of these three characters that we have enjoyed in the previous six books in this gem of a series – always a new quest and always a team effort. And amidst all the fun, Anh Do once again cleverly focusses on positive character-building traits; striving to be the best, showing kindness and empathy, using imagination and creativity, and having respect for others.  

The success of this series of books demonstrates the strength of the partnership of Anh Do as author and Dan McGuiness as illustrator. The vibrant writing and the wonderfully crazy illustrations bring these stories to life in what I refer to as ‘multiple read’ books – they continue to amuse even when the reader knows the outcome and the visual experience is as rewarding as the reading.  

Hot Dog! Show Time #7 is a read-out-loud fun or have a giggle-at-bedtime kind of book. Recommended for 5 years +. Thanks Anh Do. 

Reviewed by Jennifer Mors 

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