Encontrando a Paco

Editorial Destellos. Oct. 2023. 40p. Tr $16. ISBN 9781737275763. SP.
K-Gr 2–A sweet dog finds his forever home in this Spanish picture book that will tug at readers’ hearts. A brown pup wakes up near a gasoline station, wondering if he is having a nightmare. No, he truly is there. People pass by and comment, many wanting to help, but ultimately, no one does. He decides to try to find his way on his own, and he comes across school children and adults who kindly give him pieces of ham and show him flowers. After a rainstorm, he finds himself back at the gas station, where a young woman takes notice of him and calls her husband. Together they bring the young dog home and name him Paco, to which he responds immediately, and they and their dogs welcome him home. Narrated through Paco’s point of view, this story shows a realistic depiction of the plight of a stray who can often wander with uncertainty, and although passersby might want to help, they often can’t or don’t. Readers will feel it in their hearts as Paco worries, and will share in his happiness as he is finally rescued. Puerto Rico's racial diversity is well-represented here.
VERDICT A great choice to share when discussing and encouraging adopting a pet, as well as for animal lovers of all ages who love happy and hopeful endings.

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