Long-lost Seuss tale delights


Twenty-five years after Dr. Seuss’ last work, “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!,” readers have gotten a new book from the beloved children’s author, “What Pet Should I Get?” The manuscript and illustrations were discovered by Theodor Geisel’s (Dr. Seuss’ real name) widow at their home shortly after his death in 1991 and put aside. Two years ago, his widow and longtime secretary rediscovered them. Lucky for us.

The book tells the story of a brother and sister grappling with this fun question during a trip to the pet store. The two resemble the siblings from “One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish.” Because that book was published in 1960, it is believed this story was written around the same time period. The cover has familiar color schemes, artwork and lettering, and the book features Dr. Seuss’ short, snappy rhymes that are fun to read aloud.

The two siblings arrive at the shop after getting the OK from Dad: Dad said we could have one./Dad said he would pay./I went to the Pet Shop./I went there with Kay. There, they encounter not just the usual array of cats, dogs, birds and rabbits, but, of course, a bevy of imaginary creatures. This leads to the big question: What pet to get?

After trying to decide, and wondering if maybe they could bring home one of each, they arrive at a thought that pushes them to move forward: NO . . . Dad would be mad./We can only have one./If we do not choose,/we will end up with NONE.

The back of the book features “Notes From The Publisher,” several pages of text and photos about how the manuscript was found, Dr. Seuss’s creative process and nuggets of information about the author.

Your kids won’t care that this is a newly discovered book by a famous author. They’ll just care that they have this new book to read – and, likely, to read again and again.


What Pet Should I Get?

By Dr. Seuss

Illustrated. Random House Children’s Books (age range 3-7 years), 48 pages.