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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Patsy is a very friendly little poodle. But there are some bigger dogs who like to bully her at the pet shop. So, when Rebecca comes in to adopt a pet, Patsy gives it her best shot to be as adorable as possible so that Rebecca will choose her. She does and the adventure begins. First, though, Patsy must say goodbye to her friend, Sheila the turtle. But she’s off to make new friends in her new family. The following day brings an altercation between another family who adopt the big bully dog, Baxter, from the pet store and Rebecca’s family. Patsy, always friendly, learns that Baxter deep down really doesn’t want to be mean. A truce is in the making and the dogs band together to help the mean family become nice.
This is a sweet story written by a very talented young writer. Alaina G. Oommen’s The Very Friendly Poodle, Patsy is a compassionate story told with care, delving into some pretty difficult issues that confront young people (as well as older people) all the time: the issue of bullying. Written mostly in the first-person narrative from Patsy’s point of view, the plot develops at a steady pace, leading to the altercation between Patsy and the bully dog, Baxter, and the climax that resolves in everyone being nice to each other. What a wonderful world we would have if everyone, humans and animals, could get along. The illustrations are lovely and help move the story forward. Dialogue is well used and realistic. This is an amazing story from someone so young. Keep writing, Alaina.