The Dog Who Lost His Bark — Review & Giveaway

Thought for the Day:

“Persist. Talent is no guarantee of success; persistence is. You can learn to be a better writer. You can write more drafts, take more classes, query more agents. If you persist at what you need to do to become a published author, you will succeed.”
~ Jordan Rosenfeld ~

Gifts for My Writer Friends:

Greg pointed out to me that my link for umping your slump didn’t work. I can’t find that same post, so HERE is a link to another post on overcoming writer’s block from he same blog. 

Have an idea for a story, but not much more than an idea? The post HERE from Janice Hardy at Fiction University can help you figure out what to do with your idea.

There is a difference between copy-editing and proofreading and that is explained nicely by Just Publishing Advice HERE with some great examples.

When last we met, I offered an ARC of Big Nate: Payback Time by Lincoln Peirce to one of you. This week’s winner, who ALWAYS shares my link in several place for extra chances, is Danielle Hammelef. Congratulations, Danielle! I will get your book out to you soon. Everyone, please stay tuned for another giveaway.

Dog Who LostEvery now and then, I receive an email from a publicist who offers me some books for review. I am happy that one I hear from regularly is  Candlewick Press. I always find some things on their list that interest me. The Dog Who Lost His Bark written by Eoin Colfer and illustrated by P. J. Lynch caught my attention right away.  I mean, look at that cover! How can you not want to read that book? Even though an illustrator is listed, this is not a picture book. It has a lot of wonderful illustrations, but is a novel for middle-graders, I would say 2nd through 4th grade, although reluctant readers, especially those who love dog stories, up to 6th grade, will be taken with this one as well. Let me tell you a bit about it.

Eoin Colfer

If the cover doesn’t break your heart, the story will — at least parts of it. The story opens with a puppy who is the shyest of a litter. The pups and their mother are owned by a mean guy, and after almost all the other pups are gone, the puppy is claimed by a new owner, but that family is also mean, and the puppy is badly abused. Finally the pup is literally thrown away. He ends up in a shelter and there he is claimed by a boy who seems nice, but the dog isn’t about to be fooled. It takes a long time but finally the boy, Patrick, wins the puppy over. He names him Oz, which is what Patrick’s father calls Australia where the father is touring with his band. Patrick and Oz are very happy together — until Patrick gets bad news. His father, Patrick is told, will be coming back to the states, but not to live with Patrick and his family. His father has a new girlfriend. Patrick is broken-hearted and shuts Oz out. Can anything heal this hurt?

P. J. Lynch
P. J. Lynch

Eoin Colfer has written a complex story looking at some very difficult issues that elementary students might find distressing. That said, it might make a good read-aloud in the classroom to generate discussions. The illustrations by P. J. Lynch are perfectly enchanting and may send readers out shopping for puppies. The book wont’ be out until September, but you can pre-order it now so you don’t forget.

I have a gently-read ARC of this book for one of you. All you need do is be a follower or subscriber (it’s free!), have a U.S. address, and leave a comment below. If you would like extra chances, please share the link to this post on Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media outlet and let me know you have done that. If you are reading this in your email, please click HERE to get to my blog, then click on the title of the post, and leave a comment. And don’t forget to check for other Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday posts at the Greg Pattridge’s blog HERE.


11 thoughts on “The Dog Who Lost His Bark — Review & Giveaway”

  1. This one sounds like a heartbreaker. You always find good reads, but the kids I share books with might find this one too sad…me too. I’m going to pass this time, but thanks.


  2. This book is one I tried to get an ARC for to review–these are my favorites and by an author I love reading. I love reading these books to help me with my own writing as mentor text. I have always had a love for dogs and after losing my last golden retriever, I know heartbreak and how slow healing can be, but right now we cannot bring another pup into our lives. I shared on pinterest, facebook, twitter, and tumblr. Thank you so much for the chance to read and review!


  3. The cover is wonderful and I know the story will live up to that introduction. Please put me in the drawing for this one!


  4. Ditto on the cover and the story seems to match the expectations set forth. I’ll be looking for this one. Thanks for the links (Although the first one from Writing Forward didn’t work. I’ll sneak back and try again tomorrow). I wish Janice Hardy was my next door neighbor. Her posts are worth their weight in gold. Finally, the editing terminology in the last link was the first I’ve read that made it so clear.


  5. Eoin Colfer + dog story = fun! I love his books so definitely must read this. Thanks for the links; I always find something I can use. And Fiction University has it’s own hotlink in my toolbar.


  6. I always enjoy visiting your blog, Rosi. You offer such inspiration through your reviews and the writer links and quotations you share. Thank you! I adore the cover of this book. Thank you for sharing this story with us for MMGM.


  7. I absolutely LOVE that thought of the day! A beautiful promise to us all. 😀

    I love Eoin Colfer’s books, and am sure this one is beautiful, but will let someone else win. I’ve found I’m not able to read books with animal abuse, so it will find a better match elsewhere. Thanks for the post and the writing gifts!


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