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Where Have You Been?    by Margaret Wise Brown, Leo Dillon & Diane Dillon order for
Where Have You Been?
by Margaret Wise Brown
Order:  USA  Can
HarperCollins, 2004 (1969)
Hardcover, Softcover

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* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

The author of Goodnight Moon brings us a delightful picture book that addresses the question of where different creatures go when they're away from us. Leo and Diane Dillon's bright and lovely illustrations elaborate on the author's answers by opening up a whimsical world of imagination.

It begins with Owl asking 'Little Old Cat / Little Old Cat / Where have you been?' Though the cat only answers 'To see this and that', the picture shows her with an elf, sitting on the curve of a crescent moon, watching through a spyglass ... I wonder what she sees. There's a Squirrel 'out on a whirl', a Fish, a Brown Bird, a Horse, a Toad ('up the road' in a very purple car), a Frog in a precarious position, a Mole, a Bee who has tea in 'a pink apple tree', a Whale, a Bunny, a Lion, a Mouse (checking out the tick and the tock in a grandfather clock), and an Old Rook who looks 'At the very last page / Of this very same book'.

There's a lot going on in the illustrations (love the whale hovering under the surface gale, umbrella held up by one fin) which kids will enjoy re-visiting night after night. Where Have You Been? is great fun, and makes one wonder how the family pet would answer the same question.

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