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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
All it took was a little accident and Molly, the Maltese dog, was paralyzed in her hind legs. She was young and full of life and energy. All she wanted to do was run and chase the squirrels, but she couldn’t do that anymore. Even her brother, Jake, had no luck in encouraging Molly to run. Her hind legs just didn’t work. The community around them came together and soon Molly’s story was well known. When a visitor appears with a dog in a wheelchair (a special one for dogs), Molly is intrigued and thrilled when the visitor gives Molly’s owner a wheelchair just for Molly.
Sherry Carnahan’s picture book story, Molly Gets Her Wheels, is a sweet, charming story about a dog with special needs. The story is told in simple language with vibrant, colorful illustrations. I love the depictions of the dogs that really show their joyful spirit. A young reader will certainly be able to follow along, perhaps even learning to read along with this story. As the plot develops, the young reader will feel compassion for brave little Molly who tried so hard to protect her territory, only to get injured. The story is told from the dogs’ points of view with lots of dialogue between the dogs as they discuss Molly’s condition and learn about the special wheelchair that will help make Molly mobile again.
Molly Gets Her Wheels is very positive and encouraging. Whilst the story is about a dog with special needs, it also speaks to children with special needs and those who are close to them. Special needs don’t mean giving up, because Molly never did. She had hope and spirit right up to the point when her special needs equipment arrived. And, oh, the sparkle in her eyes when she realizes her dream of running free. Beautifully told and presented.