Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Wild & Wonderful Wednesday: A Dog's Way Home by Bobbie Pyron

A Dog's Way Home
written by Bobbie Pyron
Katherine Tegen Books, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-06-198674-1
Interest Level: Grades 4-8
Received free in a giveaway hosted by A Patchwork of Books.
Opinions expressed here are solely my own.

BLURB: One late fall afternoon, a tragic highway accident leaves eleven-year-old Abby and her beloved Shetland sheepdog, Tam, stranded at opposite ends of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Though each is determined to be reunited with the other, the days separating them turn to weeks, then months, and dangers and changes fill up Abby's and Tam's lives. Will they ever find their way back home to one another? 

I consider myself generally speaking a cat person.  I'm much more comfortable around cats than dogs.  But I do still enjoy reading books about dogs.  When I first heard about this book, I wasn't sure that I would really like it.  Of course, I do really like other dog books.  Jack London's Call of the Wild and White Fang are among my favorite books.  I also really like Jim Kjelgaard's books about dogs. Add this to the fact that this is a Utah Beehive Book Award Juvenile Fiction nominee for 2013 made it a book I needed to read.  Winning an autographed copy of the book was a nice bonus.

I found myself really enjoying this book.  I was afraid at first that it would be kind of slow, but it wasn't at all.  At least, I didn't find it so.  The story moves quickly from the time that Abby and Tam get separated.  The alternating accounts (Abby and Tam) could have slowed the story down, but it didn't.  I found myself anxious to find out what would happen next in the story.  Tam's predicament tugged at my heartstrings and I found myself cheering him on in his struggle.  There is one part of the story that I connected to especially well.  I won't mention what that was in order to avoid spoiling the story for future readers.  Just know that something similar happened to one of my family's pet cats when I was younger, it resulted in us having to put Sparky to sleep.  At this point in the story I wanted to jump into it and give someone a piece of my mind.  To me this is always the best sign of a book that passes just good and jumps to great, a book that makes the reader care so much about the characters that they seem real.  The writing is excellent, but secondary to the story, also a sign of a great book.  The gorgeous cover helps too, there is something very appealing about shelties that the cover shows beautifully. I highly recommend this story for all those who enjoy a story about survival, hope, love, and sacrifice.

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