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Author Kizzie Jones creates a beautiful origin story about how the lovable dog species – the Dachshund – came to be with the help of illustrator Scott Ward.
In an enchanted time and place, a little girl walks every day along a beautiful beach, delighting in the sea stars, anemones, mussels, and barnacles that are revealed when the tides sweep out. She combs the beach for treasured “friends” of shells and sand dollars. A pod of humpback whales visits the beach twice yearly, and the little girl thrills to see the whales and their newborn calves. But the little girl is lonely and more than anything, wishes for an animal friend to take home with her.
Kizzie Jones loves dachshunds (she has three) and lives near the Salish Sea, where Orcas and Humpback whales and other sea life frolic and play. This familiar setting provides a rich environment for her charming stories to take root. How Dachshunds Came to Be: A Tall Tale About a Short Long Dog, is Kizzie Jones’ first book, and like the other books in her series, A Tall Tale About a Dachshund and a Pelican: How a Friendship Came to Be, and her very latest book in the series, A Tall Tale About Dachshunds in Costumes: How MORE Dogs Came to Be, artist Scott Ward’s illustrations perfectly match the mood of Jones’ narrative – bright, fresh, almost etheric colors of sea, sand, and the whimsical renderings of the little girl and those who love and surround her. Each page number is highlighted on the back of a dachshund, and the three dogs that rush to befriend the little girl are simply adorable. This sweet collaboration makes a perfect “read-to” for parents and grandparents of toddlers and an engagingly accessible tale for older children to delve into on their own.
Shortly after the little girl leaves the beach for home, the whales decide to find a companion for her. This friend would need to be a warm-blooded mammal – able to breathe fresh air. Each creature has ideas about the ideal companion. A barnacle suggests giving it a long nose; seals advise a “long sleek body” just right for cuddling; anemones think it needs soft wavy whiskers and eyebrows. The octopus naturally suggests 8 limbs. Still, the group settles on four, with padding on the ends of their legs – suitable for walking on land.
By the time the little girl awakens and returns to the beach, she finds not one but three new friends – black, brown-red, and golden dachshunds. They run to her, ready for cuddles and loves.