Review Detail

Kids Fiction 485
A dog for every day of the week!
Overall rating
 
4.5
Plot
 
4.0
Characters
 
4.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
5.0
Zoe really wants a dog, but her family apartment is not quite big enough. Luckily, her neighborhood has many friendly dogs in it. She knows many of them personally, from the fluffy little Blizzard (with her adorable sticking out tongue!) to the bookstore chihuahua Wishbone, to her sister Meg's piano teacher's collies, Gabby and Abby. There's even Marmalade, who needs wheels to help him get around because his back legs are weak. When Zoe and her sister are out for a walk in the neighborhood, they meet Ms. May, who tells them about the community garden where she is growing vegetables. She gives them carrots, and gets Zoe thinking. For her birthday, Zoe plans a party in the park and invites a lot of people, as well as the dogs who are her friend. While she might not have a furry friend of her own, Zoe is fortunate that she has access to a wide range of canine companions.

Good Points
I love to read books about dogs, and am fortunate to have a constant cuddle companion in my dog Pongo, but many young children are not able to have dogs, for a variety of reasons. While Cumming's Can I Be Your Dog or Thompson's A Family for Louie address the more traditional idea of finding the right dog to take home, I like that Zoe is open to other ways of enjoying the company of dogs.

Wulfekotte's illustrations are expressive, and the dogs are so adorable that it's not wonder that Zoe wants to have that kind of cuteness all the time! Many of the scenes are set outside, and there's a lot of attention paid to Zoe's surroundings, whether it is outside on the city sidewalk or in the park. I especially liked the community garden.

I so wish that Zoe was shown taking care of some of the dogs, but that is purely selfish; I occasionally have students who come over to let Pongo out when I have to be away, and would love to encourage other children to help out dog owners! The final picture of Zoe surrounded by all of "her" seven dogs makes this book worth reading. What a great lesson in finding happiness in alternate ways!
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