Submitter: We had a lot of parents take this book out and abruptly bring it back the next day. I was curious, so I took a look. At first, the book is pretty cute. Dougal the bear ends up at the dump, he meets a friend, and gets to ride in the garbage truck with the men. Then, well, there’s a picture of Dougal at the pool hall with the guys drinking a large mug of “ginger beer.” The book goes on to state that Dougal and his friend had too much ginger beer and had to “sleep it off” in the truck. Mind you, this is complete with a picture of Dougal the bear laying on his side drunk; his friend is flat out on his stomach. Now, I didn’t think ginger beer was alcoholic, but no one needs to sleep off a soda! So, we weeded it. In a small town that packs a lot of conservative parents, we can’t be giving out a book where stuffed animals get hammered. On a personal note, I thought it was hilarious and otherwise a cute book. I weeded it and brought it home because I couldn’t let such a priceless treasure slip from my fingers.
Holly: I’m surprised none of the parents complained. I can just see it: “My child has been playing at being drunk ever since I read him this book!” Amazon lists an unfavorable review by School Library Journal, but customer reviews seem quite positive! The author is from Australia.