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Release Date
September 13, 2012
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Tyrone "Li'l T" Roberts meets Buddy when his family's car accidentally hits the stray dog on their way to church. Buddy turns out to be the dog Li'l T's always wished for--until Hurricane Katrina comes to New Orleans and he must leave Buddy behind. After the storm, Li'l T and his father return home to find a community struggling to rebuild their lives--and Buddy gone. But Li'l T refuses to give up his quest to find his best friend. From the author of the BBYA Top Ten selection The Great Wide Sea comes a powerful story of hope, courage, and knowing when to let go.

Editor review

1 review
Hurricane Katrina
Overall rating
Plot/Characters/Writing Style
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
Li'l T is happy with his life in New Orleans in 2005 except for one thing: he desperately wants a dog. When the family car hits a dog on the way to church, they rally support and take the dog to the vet, who has to amputate one of the dogs legs. Li'l T is happy that he finally has a pet, and assumes extra responsibilities, like mowing yards, in order to pay for Buddy's upkeep. Of course, in the late summer of 2005, Li'l T's family has bigger issues to worry about-- they have to leave their home because of Hurricane Katrina, and when they can't fit Buddy in the car, they leave him locked in an upstairs bathroom. Once the storm passes, they try to retrieve him and are devastated when he is not there, although relieved that he has been rescued. The pastor of the family's church tries to help locate the dog, and it turns our Buddy has been adopted by a family in California. When the adoptive family contacts Li'l T, money is raised to send him out to bring the dog back. Once there, he realizes how much the other family loves Buddy and has to make the decision as to what is best for the dog he adores.

Good Points
Strong sense of place and community, as well as another view of the events of Hurrican Katrina and the devastation that it brought to communities. I'm assuming that Li'l T is African American, which would be great, because there aren't as many multicultural dog books, but looking back, I have nothing concrete to indicate this; even the cover is ambiguous.
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