Guru Guru Pon-Chan 1

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9780345480958: Guru Guru Pon-Chan 1

RUFF RUFF LIFE

Ponta is a Labrador retriever puppy, the Koizumi family’s pet. She’s full of energy and usually up to some kind of mischief. But when Grandpa Koizumi, an amateur inventor, creates the Guru Guru Bone, Ponta’s curiosity causes trouble. She nibbles the bone–and turns into a human girl!

Surprised but undaunted, Ponta ventures out of the house and meets Mirai Iwaki, the most popular boy at school. When Mirai saves her from a speeding car, Ponta changes back into her puppy self. Yet much has changed for Ponta during her short adventure as a human. Her heart races and her face flushes when she thinks of Mirai now. She’s in love! Using the power of the Guru Guru Bone, Ponta switches back and forth from dog to girl–but can she win Mirai’s affections?

Winner of the Kodansha Manga of the Year Award!

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From Publishers Weekly:

The theme of this goofy shape-changing story recalls Othello by the same author: a caring boy can rescue a mentally challenged transforming girl. Pon-chan is a playful Labrador retriever puppy, and her inadvertently destructive behavior disrupts her family. Then Grandpa invents a bone that's supposed to allow pets to talk, but when Pon-chan swallows it, she turns into a little girl. At first, the humor revolves around the expected contrast between dog and human behavior: it's a bit shocking to see a naked child pooping on the lawn or jumping unashamedly on a stranger. The silly stuff is just a setup for a more meaningful story line, though, as Pon-chan falls in love with the neighbor boy. Several months later, she's an adult dog, which makes her a teenager who must be sneaked into school when she transforms. She learns to speak, but she's still a dog mentally, sticking her head out the school bus window or fetching a Frisbee in her teeth. The cartoony art is full of caricatures, with frequently exaggerated expressions to sell the emotion. Although much of the book is broad comedy, the emotional underpinnings give the story a sweetly appealing side as well. (Aug.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 5 Up–Lovable dog Ponta has become human after swallowing a new invention, The Chit-Chat Bone. Transformed into an attractive young woman, she nevertheless continues to act like a dog, enthusiastically jumping on her friends and eating greedily from her lunchmates' bowls. Ponta's transformation is not permanent, though, and she constantly switches between her canine and human states. Melodrama kicks in as she agonizes over her human crush, Mirai, sadly realizing that love between dogs and humans can never be. Goofy asides and sound effects fill the frames, and characters' features and emotional reactions are comically exaggerated. This exuberant, untidy style reflects Ponta's giddy and confused mood swings, and readers will find it hard not to root for such an endearing heroine.–Lisa Goldstein, Brooklyn Public Library, NY
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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