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ELIZA'S DOG by Betsy Hearne


by Betsy Hearne & illustrated by Erica Thurston

Age Range: 8 - 12

Pub Date: April 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-689-80704-X
Publisher: McElderry

 After a long, carefully plotted campaign, Eliza's parents let her have a puppy, a border collie she finds while on vacation in Ireland. There are still many obstacles to overcome, not the least of which is getting the dog home to America. Panda is fairly well behaved and intelligent, which makes the usual trials of housebreaking and training a bit easier than usual, though still a source of amusement. Eliza is part military strategist (plotting all her moves precisely), part lawyer (arguing any point until she wears down the opposition), and thoroughly spoiled, which makes her rather less than appealing as a protagonist. Hearne (Polaroid, 1991, etc.) has created a heroine whose life is storybook-perfect, yet Eliza spends most of her time obsessing over her next acquisition. That would be fine if it were the point of the story, or if she improved by the end, but it isn't and she doesn't. There are moments of humor, and a terrific subplot about a report on Queen Elizabeth I. This book has appeal, mainly for other dog-obsessed children. (b&w illustrations, not seen) (Fiction. 8-12)