Paul Jennings has produced an absolutely beautiful and emotional story with A Different Dog. Following a young boy who does not speak, as he tumbles into a terrifying, emotional experience. A Different Dog looks at how poverty impacts on a young boy and his mother, the bullying it leads to and the way the boy copes with this. The young boy meets a dog, which opens up another narrative around what has led to the boy’s and his mother’s poverty and the shutdown of his speaking.
Paul Jennings has recommended this story for 10-14 year olds – I found the story beautiful, but dark and very sad and I am not sure I would recommend it for this young an age group. Adults would greatly enjoy the tale, as may young adults, but younger may find it too confronting.
Paul Jennings writes beautifully; the simple words and sentences are so descriptive and to the point.