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Rave Reviews for Puppy Pickup Day

I have to admit my first review for Puppy Pickup Day was not very complementary.

It was for an early stage of the manuscript when my granddaughter, Bella, said “Nana, I'm sorry but it's just too boring!” You have to love the honesty of kids. I've been blessed with a few honest critics in my family who will always tell me the truth along with colleagues, friends and editors that have helped to make this the best it can be!

I do love the honesty of kids and appreciate the editors, peers in critique groups and beta readers who took time to provide constructive criticism that helped make the first book in The Little Labradoodle Series better.

Rave Reviews

From my perspective, the most important stakeholder is the kids. I want to be sure they would love the book, so I asked our beta readers to video record them reading to their kids or the kids reading the book themselves. We had some funny reactions and some great insights from that effort. We hit our mark and I was actually surprised that so many of them “got” the humor in the book.

What did kids like most?

  • The faces (expressions / emotions) on the characters

  • Surprises hiding in the book - My granddaughter and others squeal with delight light as they

recognize the bunnies playing hide and seek or the frog who appears throughout the book.

  • They loved the puppies, cats and other friends that help the puppy.

Beta Readers were equally complementary:

  • “I think the book is a winner! In my opinion small children will love it – because I do!”

  • “I think the rhyming works well - from my own experiences, it makes it fun for the parent as well when the books rhyme and your child learns these rhymes and starts to almost 'sing' the book with you.”

  • “The illustrations are absolutely beautiful and work perfectly with the story. I think it is perfect, I truly loved your book. When can I order my copy?!”

  • “Engaging way to have fun, encourage reading and art, and learn core values.”

  • "Gabby loves it and just wants to read it over and over again!"

Midwest Book Review

We have been fortunate to receive an outstanding review from Midwest Book Review. The review will be appearing on September 3rd, but we got the early release and couldn't wait to update everyone! Full text is below:

Eight engaging labradoodle puppies wake up to greet the day in April M. Cox's engaging picture book story of a special day when all the puppies expect to get a new home. They are fed, groomed, and play, but one little pup, smaller than his siblings, is rejected. As the rollicking rhyme follows the fun and games, young readers can't help but be concerned about one little outcast who falls off the puppy slide, is too small to play tag, and gets lost too easily.

As the countdown begins, teaching numbers to young animal lovers, the last little puppy begins to wonder if getting a new home is something else he's going to miss out on. He's become lost (on Puppy Pickup Day, no less), but his friendly nature leads to help from unexpected places, and after his siblings are picked by new families, he discovers something important about courage and finding his place in the world even though he's a runt who can't do what his siblings enjoy.

A variety of messages are wound into this fun-loving story of a little puppy's adventure: counting, colorful fun, lessons on friendship and helping, and embracing new experiences. Illustrator Len Smith's oversized, colorful panels are a huge draw to an equally-strong, uplifting story line that will delight young picture book readers and their read-aloud parents. He's a former Disney & Hanna-Barbara illustrator, and so his background is perfect for translating the story into large-sized, exceptionally colorful characters designed to provide eye-catching excitement and action to enhance the story's visual appeal.

Each panel is packed with not just vivid colors and playful action, but emotion as the little puppy moves through his choices and considers his options. Not only the puppy's emotions are involved: readers will find their heartstrings similarly pulled as the story visually 'pops' with excitement.


We are still in need of your support to meet our goals for printing the book and producing the gift sets for the holidays! Please pledge and share information about our campaign with others.

There are pledge levels from $1 (for electronic extras and updates) to $500 which includes one on one coaching from April Cox to self-publish your own book and be considered for Little Labradoodle Publishing. A few of the most popular levels are shown below.

Click on the rewards below to go directly to the Kickstarter campaign.

Thank you in advance for your kind consideration!


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