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THE DOG WHO BELONGED TO NO ONE by Amy Hest

THE DOG WHO BELONGED TO NO ONE

By Amy Hest (Author) , Amy Bates (Illustrator)

Age Range: 4 - 7

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-8109-9483-6
Publisher: Abrams

Hardworking girl meets scruffily cute mutt. Book design, with vintage type and text boxed like silent-movie title cards, combines with Bates’s elegant watercolors to give readers an immediate period feel. The small brown-and-white “dog with crooked ears” curiously wanders the streets while a somber little girl named Lia works hard at her family’s bakery on the edge of town. She delivers fresh baked goods every Sunday on her bicycle, as difficult and exhausting as it sounds, and one Sunday, it starts to rain. Lia pedals home quickly, and the dog races through the storm to find a comfy niche. They nearly collide but, following an instinct, the dog dashes ahead to the bakery, where both are given food and warm towels. From then on, Lia has a faithful companion. Careful parallel storytelling and beautifully paced page turns allow both text and illustrations to develop the characters, establishing both worth and loneliness, so the inevitable happy ending satisfies thoroughly. It’s a warm, well-appointed tale; both author and illustrator show a keen eye for detail. (Picture book. 4-7)