Monday, March 14, 2011
Book Review - me and jack by Danette Haworth
Book: me & jack
Author: Danette Haworth
Age Range: 8-12
Background: me & jack was on my list of TBR “to be read” books because I loved Danette’s Violet Raines Almost Got Struck by Lightning story about spunky little Violet.
Review: me & jack is a middle grade fiction set during the Vietnam war. But the story is really a tale about a boy (Joshua) and his dog (Jack). This is a story about relationships, family, friends and having to make tough choices in hard times.
Joshua and Jack meet at the perfect time. Joshua’s mother has died and he’s living with his single father (Rich) who is working to support his only son as a war recruiter in the worst time: a time of war. No one likes the war and everyone wants to blame someone. Joshua’s dad is new to town and an easy choice.
Just about to enter seventh grade, in a new town, Joshua needs a friend in the worst way. Jack is a boy’s-best friend. Right from the start there’s a bond between the two that can’t be broken. Even at the dog pound they felt like old friends.
“The dog rested his eyes on me openly, as if he knew me, as if he trusted me. Staring back, I felt the same way.”
But trouble starts in the very beginning. No one likes Jack because they blame him for everything and anything that goes wrong in the small town. And, he doesn’t help things. He’s always getting loose and running into the woods, chasing things. He even hunts a rabbit and kills it. The bad thing is, he does it at the local ice cream shop where everyone sees and from then on they think he’s a killer.
Mixed into the matter is another boy (Ray the yo-yo slinger) and his cousin (Prater the spoiled brat). Joshua wants to be Ray’s friend but Prater keeps getting in the way. In the end, Ray has to make a hard choice.
Overall: There is plenty of drama in this “dog” story. And, it’s a great “boy’s book”, one with lots of adventure and even a little fighting. Plus there’s even a little suspense mixed into the mash. Of course girls will love it too. This is recommended, even if you don’t like war stories.
Publisher: Walker Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: June, 2011
Source of Book: Review copy from author