Wednesday, June 12, 2013


A review from Mr. B. of the Grandview Branch:  

Who would have thought rescuing a border collie who is about to be “put down” in a distant animal shelter could be such an adventure? Ben Duffy explains it all, from the moment his dad and their dog, Atticus, wake him up before dawn for the surprise Road Trip for the three of them (“Dad, did you tell Mom about this?” No, he didn’t) to manipulating Dad into taking Ben’s best friend, troubled-teen Theo, along for the ride; from trading the suddenly disabled truck for an old school bus (and its owner, Gus) to drag racing a cop car in that bus, with the cop driving the bus. Along the way, they add young waitress, Mia, to their ever expanding party, and are nearly defeated by a teenage gang member.  

Spoiler: yes, they arrive at the shelter in time to rescue the border collie, but that’s not the end of the story.  Authors Jim Paulsen and his famous father, Gary Paulsen, even find a voice for Atticus, who acts as a Greek Chorus from time to time on his own page, without breaking the spell. This dog-loving slapstick comedy successfully supports a serious spine about adolescence, identity, and family.

RL: 4-8
Age: 10-14

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