A Collie Called Sky (Jasmine Green Rescues) by Helen Peters, illustrated by Ellie Snowdon

A Collie Called Sky (Jasmine Green Rescues) by Helen Peters, illustrated by Ellie Snowdon. Walker Books, 2020. 9781536210262.

Format: Hardcover

Rating:  1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4

 Genre: realistic fiction

 What did you like about the book? Jasmine Green is back for another action-packed, heartstring-tugging animal rescue.  In this installment, she finds an emaciated collie puppy tangled in a hedge on her family’s farm property.  She brings the puppy home and begins the process of nursing him to health (with help from her neighbor and best friend, Tom) and cajoling her parents into letting her keep him.  Jasmine’s veterinarian mother does not want another family pet, and reminds Jasmine of their responsibility to try to find the dog’s rightful owner.   But Sky’s skittish behavior – especially at the sound of adult male voices – leads Jasmine and Tom to believe that the puppy would be much better off not staying with the Green family.  The duo train the dog with a variety of useful commands, and become more and more attached to him every day.  The owner is eventually found, and determined to be unfit, so then it is up to Jasmine to convince her parents they need a new dog for the farm. 

There is a lot of nerve-wracking excitement throughout the book, such as when Sky gets loose during a thunderstorm, and when Jasmine sprains her ankle in a field and sends Sky to get help.  These scenarios, woven among heartwarming moments of Jasmine and Tom caring for the puppy and the other animals on the farm, sweet family scenes with Jasmine’s stern but kind parents, and some comic relief provided by her mischievous 6-year-old brother Manu and his friend Ben, make for a satisfying, quick read for young animal lovers.  Charming pencil sketches enhance the story.  The book concludes with a brief interview with Jasmine about how to choose and raise a puppy, and a sneak peek at the next book in the series. 

Anything you did not like about the book?  no

 To whom would you recommend this book? It is appropriate for 3rd-4th grade readers who enjoy animal stories and are ready for something a little more challenging than the Puppy Place series or others of that ilk.  

Who should buy this book? Public and elementary school libraries

Where would you shelve it?  Fiction

 Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles?  no

 Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City:  Leigh Russell King, Lincoln Street School, Northborough, Massachusetts.

Date of review: 12/29/2020

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