It was a long journey, but the first Yelodoggie book was released this month from FreedomChaser Books, an imprint of Who Chains You LLC, an indie publisher that serves the animal rescue and advocacy community.
In 1978, I entered art school to study children’s book illustration. I have always loved books, and Highlights for Children locked in my love for children’s illustration. But when I left college, my life took a detour into graphics, and that became my career for the next 2 decades. I didn’t start thinking about children’s literature again until my forties. Although I wrote scripts for two children’s books at that time, I never illustrated them because it just seemed too daunting a task. Then my writing took a detour, and I ended up penning five books about my experiences in animal rescue.
Shortly after the turn of the century, I created Floyd, the yelodoggie, and I began to paint him in various, often compromising, situations. I sold the original paintings and prints of them over the next decade. Then I made two influential friendships through my love of dogs: Bob McCarty, author of the Planet of the Dog’s series of children’s books, and Tamira Ci Thayne, founder of the rescue group Dogs Deserve Better, and author of the Animal Protector Series of children’s books. While Tami hired me to illustrate three of her books, Bob began advocating that I do my own book with my yelodoggie as the central character. I provided Bob with images of all my paintings, and he wrote a rough draft of a story based around them. By the time I finished Tami’s three books, I had gained the confidence to do my own project.
Floyd is a happy dog with many friends. One day, someone asked Floyd why he ìs yellow. Floyd had never thought about it. He did not know the answer. He wasn’t a lemon. He wasn’t a banana. He was a dog. “Why am I yellow?” he wondered. Join Floyd on his adventures to find the answer to his question, and meet many of his friends and other animals along the way. A great family conversation starter and bedtime read. For ages 4 and up with an adult’s help, or 6 and up for beginning readers.
Here is what readers are saying about it:
“Why Am I… is a beautiful book to delight kids and adults alike with lively, attractive illustrations and a cleverly posed message about value and identity. Every page is frame-worthy.”
— Bob Tarte, author of Enslaved By Ducks, Fowl Weather, and Kitty Cornered.
“A sweet little book that will inspire little guys (and all readers) to feel secure in who they are.”
“I liked that the dog was happy again.” –Asher, age 4
“I liked when he had an answer.” Baylee, age 4
“. . .the real magic Wulff and McCarty conjure in this book: instead of only asking “Why am I Yellow?” the interruptions truncate Floyd’s query into the far more universal “Why Am I…?” And just like that, the book is elevated from just really good to truly great. The smaller question becomes larger — possibly the single largest question ever asked throughout history; ”Why do I exist?” — F.A.Vicarel (Preschool teacher)
If you pick up a copy, please take a moment to rate or review it on Amazon or goodreads. Thanks!