McTavish Goes Wild by Meg Rosoff, illustrated by Grace Easton. Candlewick, 2020. 9781536203318
Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4
What did you like about the book? This easy, short chapter book turns a sappy dog rescue story into a wry dog-tells-all family profile. McTavish takes his job as a rescue job seriously: ” .. he had helped the Peacheys become far more organized and relaxed than when he had first decided to rescue them.” And he has his work cut out for him: Ma Peachey has had it with her distracted family; Pa Peachey assumes the worst will happen in any situation; Ollie just wants to find a girlfriend; Ava spends most of her time reading existential philosophers; luckily, there is Betty, who is the reasonable one. When Ma decides that camping is just what the family needs this summer, McTavish steps in to make sure that their experience is all that he knows it can be. Mainly, he helps the family find joy and success with whatever is on the table. This humorous story makes fun of all the ways we find to sabotage ourselves, and helps the reader understand that a wise dog is the answer to most questions. The black and white media and collage illustrations add more fun appeal. I pictured Pa Peachey as a grumpy older man from his textural characterizations, but the art depicts him as an overgrown teenager!
Anything you didn’t like about it? No
To whom would you recommend this book? A good independent read for 7-10 yr olds, or a fun short read aloud.
Who should buy this book? Elementary school and public libraries
Where would you shelve it ? Fiction
Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes, especially if you like dog stories.
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Stephanie Tournas, Robbins Library, Arlington, MA
Date of review: May 17, 2020