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A Dog's Way Home
Contributor(s): Pyron, Bobbie
ISBN: 0061986747     ISBN-13: 9780061986741
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
    OUR PRICE: $16.85  
Product Type: Hardcover - Other Formats
Published: February 2011
Annotation: After a car accident strands them at opposite ends of the Blue Ridge Parkway, eleven-year-old Abby and her beloved sheltie Tam overcome months filled with physical and emotional challenges to find their way back to each other.
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
Shetland sheepdog; Fiction.
Dogs; Fiction.
Lost and found possessions; Fiction.
BISAC Categories:
- Juvenile Fiction | Action & Adventure
- Juvenile Fiction | Animals | Dogs
- Juvenile Fiction | Social Issues | Friendship
Dewey: [Fic]
LCCN: 2010006960
Lexile Measure: 670
Academic/Grade Level: Grade 4-6, Age 9-11
Book type: Juvenile Fiction
Physical Information: 8.50" H x 5.75" W x 1.25" (0.90 lbs) 321 pages
Accelerated Reader Info
Quiz #: 143122
Reading Level: 4.5   Interest Level: Middle Grades   Point Value: 9.0
Scholastic Reading Counts Info
Quiz #: Q53706
Reading Level: 4.2   Interest Level: Grades 3-5   Point Value: 14.0
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.

Reviewed by Horn Book Guide Reviews (Horn Book Guide Reviews 2011 Fall)
A car accident leaves Tam, a Shetland sheepdog, lost and injured in the Blue Ridge Mountains far from his home and beloved owner Abby. Alternating chapters present Tam and Abby's attempts to find each other over the next year. The Tam chapters are particularly well-crafted and highly engaging; too many subplots scatter focus in the Abby sections. Copyright 2011 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2011 January #5)

In the tradition of The Incredible Journey and Lassie Come-Home comes a heartwarming, suspenseful tale of a dog's arduous 400-mile journey to find his 11-year-old owner, Abby. Tam, a champion sheltie, nearly loses his life on his way home from a competition when the truck he's in slides off the road and his crate is thrown into a creek. He manages to escape a watery death, but finding his way back to "his girl," who was hospitalized after the crash, proves physically exhausting and requires learning new survival skills. Meanwhile, Abby refuses to believe Tam is dead, even after weeks pass and her family pulls up stakes in Harmony Gap, N.C., to move to Nashville. Switching credibly between Abby and Tam's perspectives (in first- and third-person, respectively), Pyron (The Ring) draws parallels between the changes that each undergoes. Tension mounts as unforeseen obstacles make it seem as though dog and owner will never reunite, yet readers, like the story's heroes, aren't likely to give up hope. With vibrant, sympathetic characterizations, Pyron creates an inspiring portrayal of devotion and survival against all odds. Ages 8–12. (Mar.)

[Page ]. Copyright 2010 PWxyz LLC

Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2011 April)

Gr 4–8—On their way home from an agility championship competition that Abby's Shetland sheepdog won, Abby and her mother are in an accident. Tam is thrown, cage and all, from the car into the river. The sixth grader and her mom are both in need of emergency medical help. No one is able to return to look for Tam until days later when there is no sign of him. In alternating chapters, Tam and Abby tell their stories. The dog's is one of harrowing hardship and dangerous circumstances, reminiscent of Sheila Burnford's The Incredible Journey (Little, Brown, 1961) as he attempts to travel hundreds of miles home to "his girl." Abby is experiencing the stress of moving and fitting in at a new school because of her dad's job, but her thoughts never stray from her beloved dog. Though months go by, Abby never gives up hope that somehow Tam will be found. This is encouraged by her grandmother, who has psychic visions of Tam trying to come home. Other mystical elements play well, such as a coyote that befriends the dog and later returns as an apparition to lead him along the correct route. There is a guardian crow, too, that protects Tam and is key in the story's finale. The alternating, brief chapters effectively help set the fast pace of the story. Though there may be too many near-death experiences for Tam, creating frustration rather than adding tension to the plot, the subject matter and page-turning intensity will hook animal lovers, including reluctant readers.—Tina Martin, Arlington Heights Memorial Library, IL

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