A Different Dog reviewed by Tara

As the boy wakes in a cold house, he remembers that they burnt his broken bed last night because there was no fire wood left. He dresses in an array of worn and mismatched clothes, complete with a garbage bag as an attempt to keep dry.

Bolstering his courage with thought of how the prize money would change his life, he sets out on the long walk up the mountain to the starting point of the race he hopes to win. His competitors jeer at him from the car windows as they pass him on their drive to the starting point. Still he persists, despite the glaring odds that are stacked against him.

The boy witnesses an accident and rescues a dog from the wreckage. As they travel together to a safe place, the reader begins to wonder who is rescuing whom.

This is a moving novella aimed at 10-14 year olds. It contains themes about poverty, grief and loss, bullying, hope, finding your voice, unlearning bad habits and finding the confidence to be yourself.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *