Blue Daisy by Helen Frost, illustrated by Roy Shepperson

Published by Margaret Ferguson Books Blue Daisy (9780823444144): Helen Frost, Rob ...

Summary:  Neighbors Sam and Katie want to befriend the stray dog that’s been wandering around their neighborhood.  She’s starting to trust them when one afternoon she falls asleep under a table that Sam’s dad has been painting.  Thoughtlessly, the kids experiment with using some of the paint on the dog, who wakes up in the middle of their fun.  She’s then marked with a “blue daisy” which gives her her name, but causes her to be mistrustful of the two kids.  They immediately regret their actions, and are dismayed when Blue Daisy starts hanging out with the mean Tracy twins.  The two have to come up with a way to win back the dog’s trust…and that just might mean reaching out to their enemies as well.  Includes recipes for the snickerdoodles and dog biscuits that are part of the story.  96 pages; grades 2-5.

Pros:  Sam’s narration is in the form of poetry, while Katie’s is prose (although quotes are in italics without quotation marks, more like poetry), making this a good introduction to reading novels in verse.  Readers will relate to Sam and Katie’s mistake, and who doesn’t like a dog story with a happy ending?

Cons:  Kids who have only read traditional chapter books may struggle with the unusual format at first.

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