Truman the Dog

Capstone. (My Furry Foster Family). Aug. 2019. 72p. glossary. Tr $17.49. ISBN 9781515844754; pap. $7.95. ISBN 9781515845607.
Gr 1-3–Eight-year-old Kaita is Japanese-American, and she loves books, puzzles, drawing, and her rescue dachshund Ollie. She also wants to be a vet when she grows up. One night at dinner, her father announces that they will be fostering an older black lab named Truman whose family had to move away without him. Kaita is excited about fostering Truman and finding him his “forever home,” but she soon realizes that adding another dog to a household isn’t always easy. Truman is shy with new people and doesn’t like to be left alone. He shreds his dog bed, eats food off the counter, and hates baths. Soon, her family is repeating the constant refrain, “Oh, Truman. You found trouble.” Despite the challenges with Truman, Kaita works hard to make him feel at home and take care of him, and she struggles a little with giving him up. The story has five chapters, a variety of full-color illustrations, and is the first in a new series, with Kaita fostering a new animal in each title. There are many worthwhile elements—a responsible and helpful protagonist, a diverse and loving family, and the message that rescuing animals is worthwhile—though the story is predictable. The endpages have discussion questions for readers, some drawing activities, a glossary, and a fun comparison of the real-life Kaita (who inspired the story) with the fictional Kaita.
VERDICT A sweet title that will appeal to young readers who love dogs

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