Score: 95+/100 (9.5+ out of 10)
This children's book made us cry tears of joy!
What a wonderful, beautiful, emotional, and compelling feel-good story about actual, incredible, real-life events!
This book centers around Alfie, a charismatic, adventurous, lovable little dog who goes with his human parents on a trip from Pennsylvania to New York. Unfortunately, Alfie goes missing from his doggy daycare, causing great anxiety, sadness, and panic for his owners!
His owners go everywhere looking for and calling for Alfie. Anyone who has lost a pet or a child in a crowd can empathize with the way that they're feeling. What's interesting is that this book not only showcases the owners' feelings and experiences, but also Alfie's. Alfie is an autonomous and interesting character unto himself, feeling sad, concerned, worried, and lonely. There are times when he is scared by things like the passing of a train or fireworks. This only makes the audience/readers cheer for him more and more.
He is such an endearing character!
Then, the most incredible thing happens: the entire town and community rallies around Alfie's owners, helping them to search for Alfie. They put up posters, go on the news, and search near and far with every search-and-rescue resource they have on hand. It is incredible to think that the love of this little dog united and brought together so many people for a common purpose!
You and your kids/students will not be able to hold yourself back from cheering for Alfie to be found safely. Every time someone calls out for Alfie, you may find yourself calling out for him as well! In fact, prompting them to do so could be a great opportunity for young readers to engage with the text.
The art/illustrations by previous OCA winner Anthony Richichi is OUTSTANDING and excellent as always, especially when it comes to Alfie himself. Alfie is illustrated very well. He is very detailed compared to the human characters, whose facial features are usually quite similar.
What made this extra special were some of the pictures at the end showing the actual search and rescue efforts to find Alfie in real life!
Check this out on Amazon!