This gentle story, in which a little girl and an old dog find adventure together, is very charming and rooted in a setting that all children will recognise. Aoife and her dad are getting ready to go out, and Aoife feels like an adventure, perhaps a trip to the mountains or the sea. But ‘It’s too much for poor Rosie’ says Dad, referring to the grey muzzled dog in her basket. A trip to the park can be filled with adventure though, if you’re ready to use your imagination and with the help of friends and neighbours. Rosie is helped along by all those they meet on the way, the postman, playing children, other dogs, the people at the nus stop, while the butcher and the baker provide treats. Arriving at the park, Aoife and Rosie transform themselves into pirates before reversing their steps and returning home. ‘Who needs mountains and the sea?’ asks Aoife, ‘Adventure and kindness is the key/ To unlock a world for you and me.’
Rosie is a lovable and reassuring presence in the story, and children will enjoy following her route, and identifying the settings and people they know from their own lives. The book’s message of resilience and perseverance is an important one, as it quietly demonstrates that with imagination and the support of other people, just about anything is possible.