LARRY THE LITTLE ORPHAN DOG by Jean Kaladeen

LARRY THE LITTLE ORPHAN DOG

A Happy Ending Story
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KIRKUS REVIEW

A neglected puppy finds a home in this picture book based on a true story.

Taking the structure of a scrapbook, the book uses the voice of Larry, the titular pup, to describe how he is rescued, brought to a shelter and a veterinarian, and eventually adopted. Each page features a color photo of Larry (a Pomeranian mix, judging by the pictures) designed to look like a snapshot taped into the book, plus Larry’s description of what’s going on in the photo: “I was very weak, tired, and hungry. I was so afraid that I even lost my fur!” The book doesn’t dwell on Larry’s sad history but instead tells the story of his happier present and hopeful future, with many pictures of the photogenic protagonist playing outside, being carried about in backpacks and travel cases, and wearing different outfits: “I still don’t have enough fur on my back, so I have to wear clothes most of the time.” Larry concludes his story with a plea to help his friends who remain at the shelter. Doubtless there are some readers with hearts of stone or deep-seated aversions to tiny dogs who will find this book unappealing; however, the remaining 99 percent of the world’s population will take one look at the picture of Larry in his pajamas and find that it alone is well worth the price of admission. The rest of the book is worthwhile, too, simply but effectively narrated in Larry’s voice and supporting a mission—animal rescue and adoption—few can fault. Kaladeen explains that this book, her first, was written in part to raise money for animal shelters, specifically “to pay for veterinary care that would otherwise be unavailable,” so readers can be assured that there is action behind the friendly words and cute pictures. Adoption isn’t for all families, she hastens to explain, especially when it comes to high-needs pets like Larry. Still, “most rescue animals just need love and a home,” both of which, by the end of the book, Larry has found.

Cleverly designed and effectively told, this dog adoption story will be a welcome addition to school and child care libraries and for families who have undergone or are considering the adoption of a rescue animal.




Pub Date: June 24th, 2014
ISBN: 978-1492814504
Page count: 36pp
Publisher: CreateSpace
Program: Kirkus Indie
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 2015




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